The Union Veterans Council Launches Veterans Workforce Development Committee

Key Initial Task Will be Implementing Biden Task Force Recommendations to Strengthen Veteran membership in Labor Unions 

Washington D.C. - The Union Veteran Council (UVC) has created a Veterans Workforce Development Committee (VWDC) as part of its commitment to filling industry gaps with talented, skilled transitioning service members and veterans across the country, along with support for existing union training and apprenticeship programs. 

The VWDC’s creation is a key part of fulfilling the UVC’s strategic purpose of creating more opportunities for service members, veterans, and military spouses into careers that provide better wages, healthcare, benefits, and a union card—careers that place a premium on workplace safety and opportunities for advancement. 

“Helping veterans find gainful employment is extremely important and incredibly personal to me,” said Will Attig, the Executive Director of the UVC. “A program exactly like this helped me make the transition from the military to a good-paying union job and the VWDC will make sure that even more veterans and service members can get the same opportunity.”

One of the VWDC’s initial key tasks will be working to implement the recommendations - which the UVC helped develop - from the Biden administration's groundbreaking report from the White House Task Force on Worker Organizing and Empowerment.

“Through their service across the globe veterans have incredible skills and dedication that they want to continue to utilize when they return home,” said committee chair Rick Passarelli who is the UWUAs Director Of Veterans Affairs and Workforce Development. “The creation of the VWDC will help us increase the capacity we have to work with other unions, the White House, and businesses to help fill industry gaps with service members and provide support to labor existing and future Veteran workforce programs.”

In the coming weeks, the VWDC will be engaging with unions - including a workforce survey - to receive input on how to increase the number of veterans in job training programs and apprenticeships. This feedback will become the blueprint for engaging with the Biden Administration, VA, DoD, DoL, and industry partners on implementing the recommendations identified by the White House Task Force.

The VWDC will lead the UVC workforce development programs and is composed of staff from affiliated unions, and is collaborating with veteran organizations, like Dixon Center for Military and Veterans Services. The committee, alongside executive director Will Attig, operates as both an internal and external-facing body—holding meetings with other labor organizations and with government agencies and officials—bringing their expertise to conversations about creating real opportunities for veterans entering or currently in the workforce.

“For the VWDC the job does not simply end with providing jobs to our veterans and supporting our union programs, we are laser-focused on ensuring our union veterans have all of the support throughout their life cycle,” said Co-Chair Mike Hazard UA “we are connecting with organizations and programs that provide our partners and veterans with comprehensive services, ensuring our veterans and their families reach their full potential.” 

The UVC - which recently became an independent organization and official constituency group of the AFL-CIO - unites the voices of millions of working union veterans in the labor movement and supports veteran programs through the AFL-CIO, Unions and Allied organizations. The UVC is a leader in bringing key labor issues to the veteran space to focus on the socio-economic issues within the veteran community. This positions the UVC as a trusted partner of the VA, DoD, DoL (VETS), and other veteran organizations.