The President says his focus is getting the unemployed back on the job and as YNN's Erin Clarke tells us, he's making a special push to get vets to work.
SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- Tony Baird is a veteran and a business owner, so he knows the type of work ethic former service members bring to the job.
"They're just very dedicated, committed, timely," said Baird.
Yet in Onondaga County, about six percent of veterans are unemployed. Nationally about nine percent. President Obama wants to change that.
"Our incredible service men and women need to know America values them for, not simply for what they do in uniform, but for what they can do when they come home," said President Obama.
He's charging the private sector to employ 100,000 vets or their spouses by 2013, offering vets a reverse boot camp, better training them to re-enter civilian life and offering businesses an incentive to hire veterans.
"I'm proposing a new 'Returning Heroes Tax Credit' for companies that hire unemployed veterans and I'm proposing an increase in the existing tax credit for companies who hire unemployed veterans with a disability," said President Obama.
That credit would range from $2,400 to $9,600.
However, Baird says there's more to putting veterans back to work than offering businesses tax incentives. He says business owners need to be ready to work with these former service members.
"You're not just hiring veterans, you're hiring who they are and there's a lot of different things you're going to have to deal with them coming back from situations that we don't really understand," said Baird.
He says training staff and a willingness from business owners to empathize with vets will make all the difference.
"If in actuality I don't have an understanding, when that veteran comes in here and we try to collaborate and try to work, he's not going to want to work here," said Baird.
It's a push that requires effort on the part of the government, business owners and veterans themselves.
For more information about the president's initiative, visit www.fedshirevets.gov.