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Veterans struggling with civilian transition

Returning veterans from the fighting in Afghanistan and from the earlier conflict in Iraq say their biggest challenge is finding work.

Congresswoman Kathy Hochul sat down with some local veterans at a roundtable meeting at the Eggertsville Snyder Library yesterday to learn more about their difficulties in landing a job.  

Hochul says she was stunned to learn that these vets were more afraid of the unemployment they face when coming home than they were of the enemy combatants they were fighting overseas.

 "It's really tragic to know that they're doing what they can to protect us, allow us to sleep safely in our beds at night and they're deathly afraid of coming home and finding themselves in the unemployment line," Hochul said.

"That fear is legitimate because the unemployment rate for recently returning veterans age 18 to 24 is upwards of 20 percent depending upon which part of the country." ?

So in response to what she heard, Hochul said she is introducing a bill allowing for veterans to be certified in a profession that they specialized in while serving in the military in hopes that will make it easier for them to find work.