Job fair aims to put veterans back to work

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – Nearly 70 employers from our area packed part of the Coliseum wanting to offer jobs to veterans.  It’s part of State Rep Martin Carbaugh’s initiative to help put vets back to work.  Right now, the unemployment rate for veterans in Indiana is about two times higher than the state’s overall level.

Veterans we spoke with say this has been an incredible opportunity for them to meet face-to-face with potential employers from right here in Northeast Indiana that are actually offering jobs. It’s something people like Marc Greene say they’ve been waiting years for.

“It has been five years since I have been out of the military. I was a damage control engineer,” Greene said.

Veteran Marc Greene says trying to start his career has been a struggle.  Bouncing from one temporary job to the next.

“It has just been up and downhill since I have been out of the military, but I’m staying optimistic thinking outside the box.”

Over the last five years he hasn’t given up or let the search bend his positive outlook.

“You know you’ve got to have a good support system, good family, and know why you are doing it. It’s the same reason why I joined the military. It’s the same things that kept me motivated and keep me motivated to succeed.”

So, why are veterans having a hard time landing good jobs? Representative Martin Carbaugh says discrimination could be partially to blame.

“It’s hard to know why a business would discriminate against a veteran. None will tell you why, but we think there might be some fear of the PTSD. There is also a fear of call backs and call ups for our reservists,” State Rep. Martin Carbaugh explained.

Governor Pence signed Carbaugh’s bill which makes it illegal for employers to do that.  After going from booth to booth, Greene says he has a very good chance at finally starting his career.

“I’ve received a lot of good feedback and seemed like a lot of people are actually interested in pursuing me into what I can be an asset to.”

Carbaugh and WorkOne officials tell NewsChannel 15 they hope to make this an annual event.


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