The Board of Supervisors on Tuesday approved a jobs program aimed at having military veterans work 5 percent of all new Los Angeles County construction job hours.
Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas noted that it’s not always easy for those returning from military service to find a job back home.
“Veterans have historically encountered difficulties with re-entering the workforce following their service to our country,” Ridley-Thomas said, pointing out that the county has roughly 4,300 homeless veterans.
“I believe that we can do better than that and we should,” Ridley- Thomas said.
The program requires a “good faith effort” on the part of all contractors on jobs costing more than $2.5 million.
Ridley-Thomas pressed for a mandatory 5 percent requirement which he said would be more effective and asked county staffers to report back in 30 days on that option.
The program applies to veterans who are residents of Los Angeles County and would also count spouses of eligible veterans who meet certain criteria.
Supervisor Sheila Kuehl praised that element of the program.
“It’s not always clear, especially for those veterans who have been seriously injured, whether they could be the sole support of their families,” Kuehl said.
Supervisor Michael Antonovich added his support.
“Our returning veterans deserve our gratitude and our assistance in transitioning to civilian employment,” Antonovich said.