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    Posted May 20, 2014 by
    monument, Colorado



    In the wake of all the recent news about the terrible health service provided to Veterans by the VA, I as an unemployed VET feel the sting of the news and the anger of promises made and promises broken by our government. Promises that are at the very base of the contract we VETs had and have with a government that just seems not to care. Currently there are over eight hundred and fifty thousand unemployed veterans in the US today with over two-hundred and fifty thousand of those being VETs of both the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. Vets who fought hard for their country and came home hoping and praying that they would be welcomed back. What the veterans have found by and large is a not-so welcome home. A welcome where our government- the government we fought for does not live up to the commitment(s) they made to us. Commitments of access to jobs and medical care, access that we earned with our blood. The story of the VA Health issue is now in the light of the media and getting a lot of attention. Yet we Vets who are by and large silent suffers have known of this and other VA broken promises for years and years and years. We watch this unfolding in the news in sad silence because we are too ashamed, too, too ashamed of our government and too ashamed to beg for what is owed us and yet too proud of the country we still love to drag her through the mud with our complaints.

    While the VA medical care issue rages, the corrupt Federal Government employment system that exist denies veterans access and fair treatment in government hiring every day. 5 point veterans, 10 point veterans and even 30 point veterans are cheated out of jobs by our government each and every day. Jobs, that if the system were fairly executed, they (the VETs) would be entitled to. Vets who have earned the meager hiring preferences which they are denied by a system that is setup to legally allow the government to deny , not only the VET what they promised, but any applicant a fair look and fair chance. A system that allows the government to release multiple job announcements for the same position at the same time, targeted at different applicant groups/pools. One announcement targeted at All US Citizens, another announcement targeted at current government employees only, announcements targeted at Merit Promotions and VEOA (vets). A system that allows the government to request referral list be unranked (list of applicants who qualify for the jobs after initial assessment). This practice allows the government job applicant selector to cover their tracks if they don’t select the highest ranked person – a person who is often a VET. A system which allows the government to randomly pick which referral list they will pick from. Each announcement will produce a different referral list because the eligible applicants were defined differently. So, if the Veteran applicants from the VEAO or All US Citizens list are at the top of those list and not the government selector’s preference or “pre-selected” or desired applicant, the Government can just pick from one of the other referral list - the ‘‘government employee only” list maybe if their candidate is at or near the top of that list if the list was rank-order or even if it was un-ranked. A system that allows the government to cancel a job announcement where many qualified and highly skilled veteran have been referred without “explanation”. Thereby, avoiding to have to hire a veteran they didn’t or don’t want to hire. A system that is so non accountable and fluidly-flexible that wide-spread discrimination is easily and often executed to keep the VET out or the black, Hispanic, Woman, handicapped or other out. But the VET, the eight-hundred and fifty thousand Vets who have come home is they most avoided like the plague in this hiring process. The VET is locked out for the most part. I know this to be true because I am a highly-skill VET and former federal government employee of over twenty plus years’ experience, who has applied for over three hundred jobs through USAJOBS in the past three years. All of which I was judged qualified and many of which I was judged amongst “the best qualified “ and referred to the hiring official for the job. All of which were either cancelled after I was referred and or selections were made from “the other” lists, OR I was simply just not hired.

    This is a travesty, not because it is happening to me, but because it is happening to them, the young VETs who have come home and the many thousands who will be coming home.

    I am a man who knows the system, a man of advanced education, advanced government training and skills and I am locked out by this corruption, if I am locked out how do the young vets have a chance? Corruption that will keep my son (a VET) and stepson (a VET) locked out of fair access to jobs and the sons and daughters of thousands of other Americans. I hope there is a little light left in the news to shined on this national problem.

    R.E. Miller
    Major, US Army, IRR
    A still Proud VET.
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