The Intersect
Oct. 18, 2011

Veterans unemployment outpaces civilian rate
The Washington Post
Despite President Obama's jobs package promising tax credit to companies that hire unemployed veterans, and programs such as government funded education and job training, recent veterans are more likely to be unemployed than their civilian counterparts. New data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics reveals that veterans who left military service in the past decade have an unemployment rate of 11.7 percent, well above the overall jobless rate of 9.1 percent. The real problem, according to some veterans and employers, is translating what men and women learned and experienced in the military into civilian jobs. More

DOD announces new Reserve Forces Policy Board members
U.S. Department of Defense
Secretary of Defense Leon E. Panetta announced new members to the Reserve Forces Policy Board (RFPB) earlier this week. First established in 1951, the RFPB serves as an independent adviser to provide advice and recommendations directly to the secretary of defense on strategies, policies and practices designed to improve and enhance the capabilities, efficiency and effectiveness of the reserve components.More

Panetta: Military retirement changes shouldn't affect current troops
The Washington Post
During a hearing on military budget issues, Secretary of Defense Leon E. Panetta told members of the House Armed Services Committee that any future changes to the military retirement system should not affect those currently serving, advocating for upholding the promise to provide a certain level of retirement for these servicemen and women. In addition, Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman General Martin E. Dempsey urged lawmakers not to compare or model military retirement programs on civilian federal worker retirement programs based on the differences in service.More

Military voter group complains of Iowa GOP snub
In August, the Iowa Republican Party promised to investigate opportunities to provide deployed service members participation in the state caucus process. However, the Reserve Officers Association, which advocates for soldiers abroad to participate in the primary and caucus process, argued this week that this promise has been ignored. Sam Wright, Director of the Service Members Law Center at ROA, comments on the party’s failure to supply results of a promised procedural review.More

Downsized on active duty? Reserve may need you
Army Times
With budget cuts and a plan to cut thousands of soldiers from active duty, chief of the Army Reserve, Lt. Gen. Jack Stultz, is focusing on developing a culture of "Soldier for Life" in which Army soldiers will have a continuum in service by transitioning to the Reserve component. This transition will allow these talented soldiers to fill shortages in captain, major and midgrade noncommissioned officer ranks, as well as help place more soldiers into jobs through the Reserve's employer partnership program. In addition, if active soldiers choose to transition to the reserve, the Army will cut costs as they would not have to spend more on enlistment bonuses, therefore saving on the investment in training in a soldier to fill a rank shortage.More

Reserve units reach out to local IRR soldiers
Army Times
Selected Army Reserve units throughout the country have been directed by Human Resources Command to participate in a new program for providing career, readiness and family support services to members of the Individual Ready Reserve. The IRR is made up of soldiers who typically have served an active-duty tour but have elected not to pursue an active Reserve career. These soldiers do not attend drills, but are required to provide updated contact information to the Army, and are subject to involuntary mobilization. This program is designed to provide IRR soldiers and their families with a local Army advocate.More

Reserve family sparks Afghan literacy project
U.S. Department of Defense
Army 1st Lt. Michael O'Neill was deployed to Afghanistan when his family asked what they could send him to help the Afghan children. Little did O'Neill realize at the time that his request for children's books would be instrumental in launching an innovative literacy initiative that's been embraced by the State Department and Afghan national government. O'Neill, an Army reservist from suburban Philadelphia, deployed to Afghanistan's northwestern Panjshir province last year as civil affairs team leader for the provincial reconstruction team.More

Louisiana National Guard shows off new Armed Forces Reserve Center
The Republic
The Louisiana National Guard will showcase the new $58.4 million Armed Forces Reserve Center in Baton Rouge. Officials say it's Louisiana's first joint Armed Forces Reserve Center, housing Army and Marine Corps reserve units as well as National Guard units.More

Job fair targets service members
Pacific Daily News
Justin Trusso sat at a table at the Sheraton Laguna Guam Resort in Tamuning diligently filling out job applications. He had a stack of eight to get through. Trusso, 22, is one of the 18 to 20 percent of National Guard, Reserve, and veterans who are unemployed on Guam. Nationwide the number is 22 percent, said Capt. Josephine Blas, program administrator for the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve.More

National Guard (in federal status) and Reserve activated as of Oct. 11
U.S. Department of Defense
This week the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps announced a decrease in activated reservists, while the Coast Guard announced an increase. The net collective result is 613 fewer reservists activated than last week. At any given time, services may activate some units and individuals while deactivating others, making it possible for these figures to either increase or decrease.More