CHICAGO – One of the largest efforts to find employment for veterans kicks off Oct. 18 as the first Statewide Veteran Job Fair of 2012 comes to communities across Illinois. The Veteran-specific effort is a key part of Gov. Pat Quinn’s economic priorities to help veterans compete for newly created private-sector jobs.
“We respect our military families, who have sacrificed so much. And we must continue to help our small business owners, who are leading our economic recovery,” Gov. Pat Quinn said. “Bringing these groups together is a win-win-win. We help a veteran find a job. We help a business owner find a key employee. And, together, we strengthen job creation and economic growth in Illinois.”
Illinois created the Statewide Veteran Job Fair in 2005 to recognize the value that veterans bring to Illinois’ workforce. Success and attendance has grown each year.
Invited businesses include those whose positions demand the skills military Veterans hone in the service. Individuals who attend should bring resumes and be ready for brief interviews. As the state’s workforce leader, the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) manages the statewide Veteran Job Fair effort and coordinates with local workforce partners.
“We know jobs are available. More than 120,000 positions in Illinoisjoblink.com and 175,000 in the Help Wanted On-line index demonstrates our business leaders are ready to hire,” IDES Director Jay Rowell said. “Our economy is moving forward slowly because our business leaders cannot find the right workers with the right skills. Our Statewide Veteran Job Fairs are the year’s most intensive effort to bridge that gap.”
Earlier this year, Gov. Quinn increased the state income tax credit to up to $5,000 for each qualified veteran who is hired. Additionally, employers might qualify for a federal tax credit of up to $4,800 through the Work Opportunity Tax Credit.
The first fair will be held from 9 a.m. to noon Thursday, Oct. 18 at John A. Logan Community College in Carterville, Ill. The next will be held from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Tellabs Center, 1415 West Diehl Road, Naperville, Ill. Visit http://www.ides.illinois.gov/ to see all nine fairs scheduled in Illinois.
Prior to the fairs, Veterans and employers should visit Illinoisjoblink.com, the revamped IDES help-wanted website. This no-cost, online career resource allows individuals to create resumes that emphasize talents and allows businesses to search for specific skills.