On Labor Day, Goodwill® Asks Americans to Help Put Vets Back to Work

Aug 30, 2012, 08:00 ET from Goodwill Industries International

Goodwill's wide array of employment programs serves military veterans, spouses and families

ROCKVILLE, Md., Aug. 30, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- As the United States marks its 131st Labor Day this September 3, Goodwill Industries International is calling on all those in our community to join the effort to help military veterans and their family members find employment. Since World War I, Goodwill has been dedicated to helping America's military veterans transition back to civilian life and re-enter the workforce. With 500 military veterans changing out of their uniforms and into civilian clothes every day, this mission is now more crucial than ever.

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Fortunately, a diverse array of partners has stepped forward to help make veterans' employment a top-tier national priority, and Goodwill is proud to be among this coalition. Last year, First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden launched Joining Forces, a special initiative designed to help military veterans and their families succeed on the home front. Goodwill was one of the first organizations to respond to the White House's call, launching "Goodwill® for America's Heroes and Their Families." Since April 2011, Goodwill for America's Heroes and their Families has helped more than 1,350 veterans and their family members find employment.

Goodwill has also partnered with the Walmart Foundation to launch Operation: Good Jobs, a program that works with individuals to create holistic, individualized plans for military veterans and their families to ensure their long-term economic security.

In addition, Goodwill and other nonprofits have joined with the entertainment industry to launch Got Your 6, a national impact campaign designed to create a new nationwide conversation about how veterans and their families can lead us forward.

Finally, Goodwill is committed to reserving 20 percent of its own new hire positions for military spouses, veterans and their families. Goodwill has been proud to serve 52,800 military members and their families.

"With just one percent of Americans fighting overseas, it is so easy for us to put their service in the back of our minds," said Jim Gibbons, president and CEO of Goodwill Industries International. "But this Labor Day, Goodwill is asking Americans to take a minute to think about the incredible sacrifices these men and women have made for our country, and to consider ways that we can ensure each of our heroes has a chance to make a contribution to the workforce here in our own community."

As we honor American workers this Labor Day, Goodwill encourages all those in our community to consider our military families, and to take a few minutes to visit Joining Forces and learn how each of us can help support our troops and their families. When consumers do their Labor Day shopping at Goodwill, they can be confident in knowing that their contributions will help the effort to put our military veterans and their families back to work.

Goodwill Industries International is a network of 165 community-based agencies in the United States and Canada with 14 affiliates in 13 other countries. Goodwill agencies are innovative and sustainable social enterprises that fund job training programs, employment placement services and other community-based programs by selling donated clothing and household items in more than 2,700 stores and online at shopgoodwill.com. Local Goodwill agencies also build revenue and create jobs by contracting with businesses and government to provide a wide range of commercial services, including packaging and assembly, food service preparation, and document imaging and shredding. In 2011, more than 4 million people in the United States and Canada benefited from Goodwill's career services. Goodwill channels 82 percent of its revenues directly into its programs and services. To find a Goodwill location near you, use the online locator at www.goodwill.org, or call (800) GOODWILL. Follow us on Twitter: @GoodwillIntl or find us on Facebook: GoodwillIntl.

SOURCE Goodwill Industries International