State celebrates YesVets Veteran Hiring Initiative with Flag Day event at Capitol

Washington State Department of Veterans Affairs and Employment Security Department

Media Release

WDVA Director Lourdes E. Alvarado-Ramos        ESD Commissioner Dale Peinecke


For Immediate Release

Date:              June 15, 2016

DVA Heidi Audette 360-725-2154 or

ESD Janelle Guthrie 360-902-9289 or

State celebrates YesVets Veteran Hiring Initiative with Flag Day event at Capitol

OLYMPIA —State Rep. Gina McCabe joined leaders of the Washington State Departments of Veterans Affairs (WDVA) and Employment Security (ESD) at the state Capitol on June 14 to celebrate the success of a new statewide initiative to promote hiring veterans.

The initiative is a result of House Bill 2040, sponsored by 14th Legislative District Representative Gina McCabe in 2015. Originally conceived as a demonstration project to take place in the Yakima Workforce Development Area, YesVets quickly spread across the state and now any employer can sign up and begin hiring veterans through the program.

Since the state launched the YesVets hiring initiative, nearly 200 businesses have signed up to support the initiative and 183 veterans have been hired.

“It’s been amazing to watch what was an idea a group of veterans shared with me in 2015 turn into a valuable and encouraging statewide incentive program,” McCabe said. “To have the program start in the 14th District, where the idea originated, is incredible.

“YesVets truly embodies what Washington’s communities are all about – neighbors helping neighbors in times of need, and recognizing the value our veterans have in the workforce,” she said. “It was an honor to speak at the ceremony in Olympia honoring employers who have said ‘yes’ to hiring veterans. YesVets is only the beginning of my efforts to fulfill the promises made to our military heroes and their families. Ensuring veterans have jobs to return to should be a priority of not only our state, but our nation.”

“Before I joined the Employment Security Department, when I worked in the private sector in aerospace, I always tried to hire veterans because I know they are highly skilled and work hard,” said Employment Security Commissioner Dale Peinecke. “Now at ESD, we have a highly qualified team of veterans who work to connect our state’s veterans with the businesses who need them. We have a challenge for Washington’s employers: Hire a veteran! You won’t regret it.”

“In case you didn’t already know this - Veterans make incredible employees,” said WDVA Director, Lourdes E. “Alfie” Alvarado-Ramos. “Their work ethic, ability to thrive in a team, self-confidence, discipline, and problem solving abilities are absolutely unparalleled.  Add to that the technical skills and abilities that they learned in their military job, and you’ve got a pretty unstoppable workforce.”

The group honored more than 25 businesses and state government agencies who had received their YesVets recognition to date. Each representative present at the event received a WDVA challenge coin.

How it works

YesVets provides public recognition to employers who actively commit to, recruit for and hire veterans into their open positions. By creating a business environment that publically recognizes and values employers who commit to hiring veterans, YesVets hopes to continue decreasing veteran unemployment. The YesVets decal presented to employers who have hired a veteran, also provides a very public way for both customers and veterans to see that the business supports veterans.

Enrolling in YesVets is quick and easy. Employers simply visit and enter basic business and contact information into the online form. Then they are contacted directly by their local veterans employment representative who can help them use the new job match site built and powered by Monster. Once the employer has hired a veteran, their local veteran’s employment representative presents them with their YesVets decal to proudly display on their business window.

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