President Biden is Working to Connect Veterans with Good Union Careers for Life

Through partnership with the Union Veterans Council and greater public investment in federally registered apprenticeship programs, President Biden is working to connect veterans with good careers for life.

Washington D.C. - The Biden administration’s task force on organized labor issued a set of recommendations yesterday that would make it easier for all workers to unionize including veterans. One of the recommendations included calls on the President to work with the Union Veterans Council, AFL-CIO (UVC) to help service members, military spouses, and veterans transition into good union jobs. In response, UVC Executive Director Will Attig released the following statement:

“The recommendations set forth by the task force on organized labor is one of the most important actions taken for the labor movement in our lifetimes. The inclusion of the UVC in these recommendations is of special importance to me and our mission to lend the veteran voice on the issues that impact us most, especially the need for good jobs and a strong, fully funded, and staffed VA. We now have a chance to change the way veterans are treated when they come home.

President Biden talking with UVC members

Last year the UVC sent recommendations to the NEC that included actions such as establishing inter-agency coordinating bodies, evaluating skills of veterans exiting their service, and expanding training opportunities to active duty and veteran spouses through programs like Skillbridge. It’s clear the administration listened.

When one leaves the military, there are a lot of unknowns. One thing that shouldn’t keep veterans up at night is how they’re going to pay the bills. Many unions have successful Veteran Workforce Development Programs (VWDPs), including many DOD’s Skillbridge Transition Programs that help connect veterans with federally registered apprenticeship programs. The UVC is now in a unique position to work with President Biden and his administration to foster greater public investment in these programs and connect veterans with good careers for life.

UVC members meet with Sec. Labor Marty Walsh

Yesterday’s announcement is a big deal for the veteran community which is typically forgotten in conversations about labor. Traditionally we have been told that labor is not a veterans’ issue, and we work tirelessly to change that culture. We know the issues affecting organized labor and the broader working class are veterans’ issues. It is apparent this administration and President Biden clearly see this intersection as a priority as well.

At UVC we are no strangers to showing up and showing out where and when we are needed most. We’re excited to continue working alongside the Biden administration to expand opportunities for transitioning service members, military spouses, and veterans not only to find good union jobs but to build the skills and experience needed for long-lasting middle-class careers.

The Union Veterans Council, AFL-CIO was built for this very purpose and now is our moment to use our platform and role in Biden’s agenda moving forward to affect real change for the veterans and labor community.