VBA Looks to Fill Jobs Connected to PACT Act Benefit Expansion

VBA Looks to Fill Jobs Connected to PACT Act Benefit Expansion
Master Sgt. Stephen J. Caruso/Air Force

The Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) plans to hire approximately 2,000 new employees this year to fill staffing needs created by a MOAA-backed expansion of benefits that could help millions of veterans.


Signed into law last summer, the Sergeant First Class Heath Robinson Honoring Our Promise to Address Comprehensive Toxics (PACT) Act expands coverage for veterans exposed to toxic substances while deployed in various theaters around the world.


Related openings include jobs as a veterans service representative, rating veterans service representative, or legal administrative specialist. Job candidates should be good listeners and problem-solvers, and have empathy for those seeking care, said Tracey Therit, the VA’s Chief Human Capital Officer.


“You need to be motivated, you need to be driven, you need to be resilient,” Therit told MOAA. “It is a complex environment. It’s uncertain, it’s challenging, so just being prepared and knowing what to expect [is important].”




Job-seekers must apply online at USAJobs.com (type the job title into the “keyword” field to find a job description), the Veteran and Military Spouse Talent Engagement Program (VMSTEP), or the VBA website by March 3. VBA encourages individuals who miss the deadline to continue to check for job opportunities both at the VBA and the Veterans Health Administration (VHA), which is trying to fill an expected 50,000 open positions. That large number includes filling vacancies and new positions.


The VBA’s legal administrative specialist position is a good fit for military spouses on the move since it allows for remote work anywhere in the country, Therit said. The other two positions specific to the PACT Act allows telework but are not remote positions.


“It is basically like a call center,” Therit said of the legal admin position. “So people in those positions are answering calls, answering emails, doing video chats [and] providing service and information to the public. So those are really great position[s] for military spouses because that work can performed from anywhere as individuals move across the country.”


Previous hiring fairs at Waco, Texas, and St. Petersburg, Fla., have been tremendously successful, Therit said, with hundreds of attendees receiving tentative job offers. The VBA has also recently held hiring events in Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Nashville, and Milwaukee, and is scheduled to have fairs in Salt Lake City (Feb. 28) and Chicago (March 2).  


Planning to attend a VBA hiring event? Therit recommends job seekers apply online before attending and come prepared with a résumé, the proper military documentation such as a DD-214, marriage certificate or proof of widowship, and a good idea of when you can start, Therit said.


“Come with a readiness to start the job if offered,” Therit said. “If you get an offer and say, ‘Oh my gosh, I need to tell my employer, and I won’t be able to start until ...’ that’s something we need to be thinking through and having a conversation about.”


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About the Author

Kipp Hanley
Kipp Hanley

Hanley is a former staff writer at MOAA.