Swords to Plowshares is proud to announce that Keith Boylan, the Policy and Program Coordinator for the Institute for Veteran Policy has been appointed Chairman of the Sub-Committee on Employment for the California Interagency Council on Veterans (IAC).
On August 23, 2011, Governor Brown issued an Executive Order establishing the California Interagency Council on Veterans, with the goal of improving the collaboration and coordination of veteran services across local, state, and federal governments.
Governor Brown’s Executive Order directs the secretary of the California Department of Veterans Affairs to establish the IAC, which will be tasked with identifying and prioritizing the needs of California’s veterans and coordinating the activities at all levels of government in addressing those needs.
“Every year 30,000 veterans return to California which is already home to the largest veteran population in the country. The IAC is a tremendous opportunity for collaboration between federal, state, and local agencies to identify and bridge the gaps in services and to ensure these veterans a successful transition home,” said Keith Boylan.
Under the order, Speaker Pérez and Senate President Pro Tem, Darrell Steinberg are each expected to appoint a member to the IAC from their respective houses. These appointees will join secretaries and department heads of the Labor and Workforce Development Agency, california volunteers, Business Transportation and Housing Agency, Health and Human Services Agency, Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, military department, Employment Development Department, Department of Consumer Affairs, Department of Rehabilitation and Department of Housing and Community Development.
Additionally, the Governor’s order requests that the Chief Justice of California, President of the University of California, Chancellor of California State University and Chancellor of California Community Colleges each appoint a member to the IAC. The secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs will also coordinate with federal partners and external stakeholders to ensure both groups are active participants on the IAC.
- The unemployment rate for Gulf War II veterans is 42 percent higher than it is for non-veterans.
- Approximately 25 percent of Gulf War II veterans have a disability that is connected to their military service, compared with approximately 13 percent of all veterans.
- Recent tests of returning troops show that 20 percent of infantry and 10 percent of other troops suffer from at least mild traumatic brain injury.
- Over 35 percent of veterans of Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom, who have sought healthcare through the Veterans Administration, have been diagnosed with mental disorders.
- California has the largest number of homeless veterans in the nation and 62 percent of all homeless veterans have been diagnosed with both substance abuse issues and serious mental health problems