Veterans still struggling to find jobs - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Veterans still struggling to find jobs

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) --While the overall job market seems to be picking up, veterans are still struggling to find employment. Hundreds showed up at a Louisville job fair today, with similar stories of struggling.

"They give you 4 day training to become a civilian again and they dump you out into the world," explained Brad Holcomb, a Navy and Marine Corps veteran.

It's hard to imagine that for men and women who put their lives on the line, the transition "back to normal" can sometimes be the most difficult. Holcomb held security roles in the Marine Corps and Navy but trying to find a job now that he's out of the military hasn't been easy.

"Believe it or not I've put in for quite a few security companies and they haven't even called me back," said Holcomb.

The U.S. Department of Labor classifies 2.6 million men and women as "Gulf War Era II Vets" meaning they've served post 9/11.  The unemployment rate for this group has actually increased from 9.7% in September of 2012 to 10.1% in 2013.  That's compared to the national unemployment rate which stands at 7.2 %  Even more alarming is the number of young male vets ages 18 to 24 without a job, the latest data shows an unemployment rate of 20%.

400 veterans showed up to this job and resource fair hosted by Congressman John Yarmuth at Slugger Field.

Carolyn Tandy, Yarmuth's district representative, "The need is out there we're definitely going to try and fill it."

90 employers were there, including Louisville Fire and Rescue.

"We do believe the fire service is a great career for them to transition into after a military career," explain Louisville Fire & Rescue's Sal Melendez.

There's just one problem....

"At the time we are not hiring. Hiring process is not open but we're planting that seed it is a place to look into in the near future," said Melendez.

While the war fighting for these service members may be over, so begins the next one.

"I think it's just fighting against everybody right now because finding a job period is hard for anyone," said Holcomb.

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