Homelessness continues despite some improvements

Capital News Service
LANSING — The coming winter and the dropping temperature are a great concern for people without a place to live. Homelessness has improved across Michigan over the past decades but not enough, according to the Michigan Coalition Against Homelessness. “There are services available throughout the state. And many communities have seen increases in the types of services that are available, but those are not significant increases that are across the board,” said Eric Hufnagel, the executive director of the coalition. According to a 2014 report by Michigan’s Campaign to End Homelessness, there were 97,642 homeless people in 2014.

Jobs for veterans a priority for state, local agencies

Capital News Service
LANSING — Officials working to reduce high unemployment among veterans now attack the issue from both ends — they prepare veterans for civilian jobs and educate employers on how to hire veteran talent. In 2013, the veteran unemployment rate in Michigan was 10.6 percent, the second highest rate in the U.S. To combat this, the Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency (MVAA) created programs that bring veteran talent and employers together. Local organizations are also doing their part to connect veterans to employers in their own community. “It’s a matter of breaking down that wall between employers and veterans, and giving them the opportunity to communicate,” said Kristina Leonardi, director of strategy for Veterans Affairs. The agency starts by preparing veterans for a civilian career through resume building and interviewing skills.