By MOAA Staff
While organizations such as MOAA have been critical to the recent successes in boosting employment and education opportunities for military spouses, Dr. Jill Biden reminded MOAA members in a recent video message that more work needs done.
“Military spouses are too valuable to be left on the sidelines,” said Biden in the video, adding that the Biden Foundation - a nonprofit created last year - is a founding sponsor of the Hiring 100K initiative, a program launched by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation's Hiring Our Heroes program in collaboration with Starbucks that's designed to find jobs for 100,000 military spouses.
Biden, a self-professed “proud Army mom,” began working with military families on spouse issues in 2011, when she and then-first lady Michelle Obama created the Joining Forces initiative. That group, with support from MOAA and other veteran and military service organizations, targeted obstacles to spouse employment such as state-by-state credentialing concerns.
Although Military spouse employment has increased, it remains well below the national employment average - a 16 percent unemployment rate, compared with about 4 percent of the general population.
“While we made some important progress, thanks in large part to organizations such as MOAA … many employed spouses don't have jobs to put their experience, education, or skills to good use,” Biden said.
“Your contributions deserve to be recognized,” she told spouses, “and your careers deserve our support.”