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American Legion Calls for More Veterans to Join Federal Sector

The federal sector hired 2,000 more veterans to join its ranks in 2010 than the year before, but some advocates are unimpressed. The Washington Post reports The American Legion is calling for OPM to recruit more veterans for employment, saying the improvements in numbers are not enough.

“We’re just not satisfied with that,” Joseph Sharpe, director of the American Legion’s economic division, told The Post. “With that effort, it should be a lot higher than 2,000 more.”

More than one-fourth of federal agency employees in 2010 were former service members, but several agencies didn’t fare so well-the percentage of veterans in 10 of 28 agencies was 10.1 or less, with the U.S. Agency for International Development and the National Science Foundation boasting the lowest percentages (5.6 and 5.7, respectively).

The U.S. Air Force has the highest number of veterans, with more than half of its employees-50.8 percent-having served in the armed forces. Almost 42 percent of Defense Department employees have performed military service.

The statistics are part of an annual report on the Employment of Veterans in the Federal Executive Branch, which proclaims that more than 25 percent of civilian hires in 2010 were veterans, while more than 8 percent were disabled veterans. Sharpe suggests more intensive transition programs for military personnel as they prepare for civilian life, including training on how to write resumes for federal employment, as means of raising these numbers further. He also proclaimed that agencies slacking in this area need to “step it up.”

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