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Easter Seals Awarded $100,000 McCormick Foundation Grant to Help Employ Wounded Veterans
Date:11/12/2008

Chicago, Nov. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- Easter Seals was recently awarded a $100,000 grant from the McCormick Foundation in Chicago to support its workforce development program, Operation Employ Veterans.

The year-long program supports the McCormick Foundation's Operation Healing Freedom campaign, providing training to employers on effective methods to recruit, employ, and retain wounded veterans across the Chicagoland area. Area corporations including CVS Caremark, Dominick's and NICOR will participate in the project.

"Returning home from military service after experiencing combat and adjusting to life with a disability can be an overwhelming, complex, bewildering and extended process," said Doug Carmon, assistant vice president, Easter Seals Military and Veterans Initiatives. "Getting and keeping a good job is a high priority for most returning veterans. Easter Seals is thrilled to have the McCormick Foundation's support in our commitment to making employment a reality for veterans."

Unemployment, Significant Needs

Statistics show high rates of unemployment for 20-24 year-old-veterans. The unemployment rate for people with disabilities is more than twice that of people without disabilities and has remained at that level for many years.

-- A study conducted by the University of Chicago found that at 13 weeks post-separation, 39 percent of veterans were unemployed or out of the labor force. The numbers for wounded veterans are more difficult to obtain, but many veteran related organizations have found that employment outcomes for wounded veterans are far worse.

-- And, findings from a recent Department of Veterans Affairs study show the private sector is not employing service members with management experience from the military or those with college educations, and that employers have negative perceptions that affect hiring decisions.

"There is a need to design and execute a targeted education strategy to help private
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SOURCE Easter Seals
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