Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis today took part in unveiling the Obama administration's action plan to strengthen and support military families. She joined the president and first lady, Dr. Jill Biden, other Cabinet members and administration officials, and representatives of veterans service organizations in the East Room of the White House to release the report Strengthening our Military Families: Meeting America's Commitment.
"Every day, U.S. service members -- along with their families -- make sacrifices that benefit all Americans," said Secretary Solis. "The president understands that providing necessary support strengthens not only these individuals but our nation as a whole. Only if we do right by them do we do right by the American people."
The report was prepared by an Interagency Policy Committee comprised of Cabinet staff and overseen by the National Security Staff and the Domestic Policy Council. The committee was formed in response to a May 2010 directive from the president to develop a government-wide plan to support military families. Some components of the plan include ending homelessness among veterans and their families, increasing opportunities in federal careers, increasing opportunities in the private sector, and reducing barriers to employment and services.
Secretary Solis, who chairs the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness, highlighted the Homeless Veterans' Reintegration Program, specifically, expansion of the program to include grants targeting homeless female veterans and veterans with families, as well a toolkit for service providers to better understand the trauma experienced by homeless female veterans. She also reaffirmed the Labor Department's commitment to the Federal Interagency Council on Veterans Employment, which she co-chairs.
In addition the Secretary emphasized other Labor Department work focused on veterans: The department has taken steps to re-engineer a Transition Assistance Program employment workshop to include more military spouses and provide a more hands-on, customized workforce readiness program. The more than 3,000 One-Stop Career Centers across the country are expanding their outreach to ensure access by military spouses to their services. And the department is committed to assisting military families through enforcement of the Family and Medical Leave Act.