Turley, Redmond, Rosasco & Rosasco, LLP Comments on Labor Department’s New Benchmark for Hiring by Federal Contractors
Says Disabled Persons and Veterans Will Have More Employment Opportunities
Troy Rosasco, Partner, Turley, Redmond, Rosasco & Rosasco, LLP, says the U.S. Labor Department’s new benchmark rules regarding the hiring practices of federal contractors will definitely give returning war veterans and the disabled the right to work and help remedy the disproportionate number of veterans and disabled currently unemployed in the workforce.
On August 27, 2013, the Labor Department announced a Final Rule that made a change to part of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Vietnam Era Veterans’ Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974 (VEVRAA) in which, beginning March 24, federal contractors are now required to make sure that 7% of their new hires are comprised of people with disabilities and veterans. In addition, the Final Rule will require government contractors to document and update comparisons of applications from veterans and the disabled and the number of people the contractor actually hires.
The changes to the Rehabilitation Act and VEVRAA were in response to advocates’ concerns about the number of disabled people in the workforce and actively employed veterans. The organization also noted that during the recession between 2008 and 2010, the employment rate for the disabled fell by 12.3%, compared with 3.4% for the non-disabled.
On March 20, the U.S. Labor Department released a report showing the unemployment rate for all veterans in 2013 was 6.6% and 9% rate for those returning from the second Gulf War. Although these numbers are significantly lower than in 2012, and the overall unemployment rate for veterans is in line with the national average, the numbers for the unemployed Gulf War II veterans is much higher.
“I am extremely pleased to see the Labor Department has brought the employment needs of our fighting men and women and our disabled to the forefront,” Mr. Rosasco said. “In these difficult economic times, it is more difficult to find a job. Under the new rule, those who want to work will now have the opportunity to do so.”
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