TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – This week, the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) announced the official start of the 2018 Paychecks for Patriots events, which connect veterans with great careers in their communities. To celebrate Veterans Day this month, DEO is sharing resources available for veterans and recognizing our partners that excel in serving Florida’s 1,525,400 veterans.

Governor Rick Scott said, “As a veteran and the son of a World War II veteran, I am proud of all our work to create jobs for veterans and all Florida families. Since 2010, thanks to Florida’s hardworking businesses and these important programs, our state’s veteran unemployment rate has dropped by more than six percentage points, and, overall during past eight years, Florida businesses have created more than 1.6 million jobs and the unemployment rate is currently at the lowest point in more than 11 years. This is great news for the many veterans and military families that call Florida home.”

Paychecks for Patriots is a partnership with DEO, the CareerSource Florida network, the Florida National Guard, the Florida Department of Veterans’ Affairs and participating Florida employers to hold job fairs for veterans and their families. CareerSource Florida centers across the state will be hosting Paychecks for Patriots events throughout the month of November, to help build connections between veteran jobseekers and Florida’s job creators. The employers will include national companies, as well as many local businesses. More than 2,100 military and veteran candidates and their family members who participated in prior Paychecks for Patriots events across the state have gained employment. More information about Paychecks for Patriots can be found at www.FloridaJobs.org/PaychecksforPatriots.

As a part of the agency’s recognition of veterans and the important role they play in Florida’s workforce, DEO is honoring our partners that connect veterans with job opportunities through the 2018 Veterans Performance Incentive Awards. These awards recognize local CareerSource network boards whose diligent work provides employment and training opportunities to thousands of veterans.

This year, the Veterans Performance Incentive Award was presented to three local CareerSource boards for their outstanding work:

  • CareerSource Northeast Florida
  • CareerSource Flagler and Volusia Counties
  • CareerSource Polk

DEO Executive Director Cissy Proctor said, “We are proud to recognize the critical work our partners in the CareerSource network have done to help veterans in their communities find good jobs after serving our country. Connecting Florida’s more than 1.5 million veterans to employers across our state is why Florida is the most military- and veteran-friendly state in the nation.”

CareerSource Florida President and CEO Michelle Dennard said, “My father served our country in the United States Navy. Ensuring Florida’s veterans can find a great job here after concluding their military service is important to me personally, as well as being a high-priority for the entire CareerSource Florida network. We applaud Gov. Scott for his continued commitment to making Florida the most military-friendly state in the country, the CareerSource Florida network for unwavering dedication to connecting veterans and their families with employment opportunities, and our partners at the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, who have made the statewide Paychecks for Patriots events a much-anticipated annual tradition that has improved lives for thousands of military families.”

Executive Director of the Florida Department of Veterans’ Affairs Glenn Sutphin said, “Our veterans have proven leadership and technical skills, the ability to work under pressure and a strong sense of integrity and teamwork. Job creators are eager to hire candidates with these values. Hiring veterans is an employer’s best bet.”

Veterans Florida Executive Director Joe Marino said, “Veterans Florida is excited to participate in Paychecks for Patriots events across the state as we fulfill our mission of attracting and retaining military talent in Florida’s workforce. Veterans bring a unique set of skills that play a critical role in Florida’s economy as it continues to modernize and expand into high-growth sectors such as tech and aerospace. I’d like to thank the Department of Economic Opportunity, CareerSource, their partner organizations, and Governor Scott for holding forward-thinking initiatives such as Paychecks for Patriots and recognizing the importance of connecting Florida’s military community with its private sector employers.”

Additional resources for veterans and military families in Florida include:

  • Throughout the year, employers post positions specifically targeting veterans in Florida. Veterans can search for jobs on the Employ Florida Vets portal at https://veteran.employflorida.com.
  • DEO also created the interactive Employ Florida Veteran Map. The map shows the location where veterans have registered in the Employ Florida system by each CareerSource region. The map displays the census tract of registered veterans as an aggregation from 2014 to 2017. The map can be found here.
  • The CareerSource Florida network employs more than 170 veteran employment specialists, who are also veterans themselves and are dedicated to helping veterans find employment. More information on other veteran employment programs, such as the Military Family Employment Advocacy Program can be found here.



About DEO

The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity combines the state’s economic, workforce and community development efforts. This new approach helps expedite economic development projects to fuel job creation in competitive communities. For more information, including valuable resources for employers and job seekers, please visit www.floridajobs.org.

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