The legislation known as the "TEAM Act" passed this year by the Tennessee Legislature and signed into law by the Governor removed the traditional hiring preference given to veterans and the spouses of deceased and 100% disabled veterans. Under duress, the legislation sponsors substituted a provision that "qualified veterans will be given an interview" for state jobs. For National Guard and Reserve members who have never been federally activated there is neither hiring preference nor the "guaranteed interview." This travesty comes at a time when veteran unemployment in both Tennessee and the nation is just about double that of non-veterans and at a time when only one of four people qualify for military service. Those who do serve are increasingly likely to take their own lives, and suicides among active duty service members now exceed the combat deaths. More Vietnam Era Veterans have now taken their own lives than were killed in Vietnam. More than half of the young service members committing suicide have never been deployed to combat, leading to the conclusion that despair from joblessness and poor job prospects is a significant contributing factor. Our Tennessee Governor and Legislators can make the change if we will petition them to reinstate the traditional hiring preference given to veterans and the spouses of deceased and 100% disabled veterans AND add the National Guard (who work for the Governor) as well as those serving in the Reserve who have never been federally activated and are therefore not "technically" veterans. Many of them experience significant trauma when deployed to disaster areas and have high stress as a result of time away from family and the jobs they do have. Please sign the petition to reinstate hiring preference for government jobs at all levels, particularly the state jobs that were taken away by the Governor and last year's state legislators.
Contact the Governor (firstname.lastname@example.org) and your legislators
Office of Governor Bill Haslam 1st Floor, State Capitol Nashville, TN 37243 Phone (615) 741-2001
LTC Kenny Allred
US Army (Ret)
Chairman of National Alliance on Mental Illness Veterans and Military Council www.nami.org
Also, please vote for me and my charity at www.eaglerarelife.com/kenny-allred