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Higgins Renews Commitment to Veterans Employment

Recognizes Non-Profit “Helmets to Hardhats” for Efforts on House Floor
 
Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-27) took to the House Floor to raise awareness of the high unemployment rate for veterans and to urge his colleagues to support employment assistance programs for veterans. 
 
Higgins specifically cited the work of “Helmets to Hardhats,” a not-for-profit program linking the Department of Defense, American businesses, and organized labor to connect veterans with employment opportunities in the construction trade.  
 
“These heroes have acted courageously to defend our nation overseas and so they deserve our assistance in making these connections when they return home,” said Higgins. “The good work of Helmets to Hardhats demonstrates that there is a demand for work and employers are eager to hire returning veterans.” 
 
Below are remarks made by Higgins on the House Floor:
 
Mr. Speaker, 
 
Earlier this month, I met with the Executive Director of the not-for-profit organization “Helmets to Hardhats.”
 
Since 2003, Helmets to Hardhats has partnered with the Department of Defense, over 82,000 American businesses, and organized labor to help returning veterans prepare for and find work. 
 
The current unemployment rate for returning veterans under the age of 24 is an unacceptable 38%. Helmets to Hardhats gives veterans the tools they need to start long-term careers in the construction trades.  In 2008 alone, Helmets to Hardhats placed nearly eighteen hundred military veterans into construction careers. 
 
Mr. Speaker, the last of our combat troops have left Iraq and we are winding down military operations in Afghanistan. These veterans put their lives on the line overseas and deserve the assistance of a grateful nation when they return to ensure that they can participate in the economy and into a lasting career. 
 
With that in mind I congratulate Helmets to Hardhats and I encourage my colleagues to do the same.