SUPPLEMENTAL In-Town Pool Report: Military spouses listening session

From: Debra Saunders []
Sent: Wednesday, August 2, 2017 2:33 PM
Subject: Fwd: SUPPLEMENTAL In-Town Pool Report: Military spouses listening session

Shortly after 1:30 p.m., Wednesday top figures in the Trump administration held a listening session with military spouses who discussed the hurdles they face looking for employment and continuing their careers. Names appear below.

Kellyanne Conway opened the event with statistics on military spouses. 92%, she said, are women, and 41% have dependent children. They are "highly educated, highly motivated," and in the working world, they should be "highly valued."

Ivanka Trump discussed the hurdles spouses face. Military wives have an unemployment rate of 16% -- four times the rate for adult women.

They face "a wage deficit of 38%."

Secretary Acosta spoke of the harsh choices military spouses face. They must deal with "finding a new home, new schools, new friends." But also "excessive licensing is a barrier."

Today 1 in 3 workers needs a license. States should find ways to recognize the licenses of other states for military spouses.

Administrator McMahon talked about growing up in a military base. A young friend's father was deployed, and the friend's mother was thrilled she got work as an Avon lady.

Kelly Hruska is with government affairs for the National Military Family Association. Her group gives grants to entrepreneurs.

Eric Eversole is a military spouse and serves in the Navy Reserve.

Elizabeth Griffin talked about the issues she faces as a language pathologist. "If you have children, that always falls on you." Often circumstances are such that she cannot "take positions that are career advancing."

Ivanka Trump asked Brooke Goldberg if there are careers to which military spouses gravitate? Yes, Goldberg answered "nursing, teaching, law degrees."

"And then we hit the barriers of licensing and certification."

Alexandria teacher Victoria Marrow said that because she has to move around "years and years of service and years of work" are not recognized.

Teacher Kim Lopez had a similar lament. She has 20 years experience but "Wherever I go, I start at the bottom."

Nicole Zillox is a nurse, which means long hours. Her biggest challenges: 'licensing, portability and child care" for her long shifts.

Karla Mettling got her masters in 2003, and said she must continually ask, "Do I continue to achieve?"

Jennifer Korn of the White House Office of Public Liaison is the wife of a Marine. She thanked President Trump for hiring a military spouse. Korn too has had to make tough decisions. She and her husband lived apart for three years and she has had to ask, "Do I leave my career or leave my husband?"

Trump Administration:

Kellyanne Conway, Counselor to the President

Ivanka Trump, Advisor to the President

Alex Acosta, Secretary of Labor

Linda McMahon, Small Business Administrator

Jennifer Korn, Special Assistant to the President and Marine Corps Spouse

External Participants:

Kelly Hruska

, National Military Family Association

Brooke Goldberg, Military Officers of America

Eric Eversole, Hiring our Heroes

Elizabeth Griffin, Speech Language Pathologist, Army Spouse, MD

Natasha Harth, Administrative Assistant, Marine Spouse, VA

Kim Lopez, Teacher, Air Force Spouse, UT

Victoria Marrow, Vocational Teacher, Marine Spouse, VA

Karla Mettling, Mental Health counselor, Army Spouse

Elizabeth O’Brien, Military Spouse Program Director, Army Spouse, VA

Trina S. Phillips, Currently Volunteer and Mother, Air Force Spouse, GA

Nicole Zillox, Registered Nurse, Navy Spouse, VA


Debra J. Saunders

White House Correspondent

Las Vegas Review-Journal

529 14th Street NW Suite 994

Washington, DC 20045


Cell xxx-xxx-xxxx


Debra J. Saunders

White House Correspondent

Las Vegas Review-Journal

529 14th Street NW Suite 994

Washington, DC 20045


Cell xxx-xxx-xxxx

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