While our country is facing devastating veterans unemployment rates, the veterans aren’t the only ones who are suffering. As it turns out, employment for military spouses is just as hard to come by.
When it comes to lac of employment for military spouses, the rates are staggering. According to National Public Radio (NPR) and a survey conducted last year by the Defense Department, there is a 26 percent military spousal unemployment rate. This number reflects both spouses who are searching for employment and those who desire to work but have given up the search.
It’s no wonder that the unemployment office has a line out the door, with military spouse employment at such a devastatingly low rate. Given the shocking rates of unemployment, military spouses are having a hard time making ends and finding work, especially amidst employer discrimination due to the nomadic nature of a military family’s life. Employment for military spouses should never be an issue, given their selfless generosity and sacrifice to our country, but unfortunately, more and more spouses are finding themselves desperate in the search.
Here is a shocking look at the lack of military spouse employment, provided by the Military Spouse Employment Partnership:
95 percent of 1.2 million spouses are women
750,000 active duty military spouses — over half are under 31 years old
400,000 Guard/Reserve spouses — over half are over 35 years old
85 percent want or need to work
26 percent unemployment rate — 1 in 4 are unemployed and actively seeking work
84 percent have some college
25 percent have a bachelor’s degree
10 percent have an advanced degree
Military wives earn 25 percent less than their civilian counterparts
Military wives relocate 14 percent more frequently than civilian families
Source: Military Spouse Employment Partnership
Fortunately, there is hope for those caught up in this difficult situation. You may be eligible for unemployment benefits for military spouses depending on your specific situation. However, unfortunately, unemployment compensation for military spouses is available to everyone and in every state. Check out the National Conference of State Legislatures’ website to see if your specific situation and state of residence qualifies you to receive military spouse unemployment benefits.
the Department of Defense has partnered with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to forge the Military Spouse Employment Partnership. This unique program aims to increase military spouse employment by helping match military spouses with portable career options.
If you have decided to use your military spouse benefits and tuition assistance and go back to school to further your career and better your chances of gaining employment, check out our list on how to choose a military inclusive college today!