CHICAGO – Governor Pat Quinn today stood with Illinois business leaders to launch the Illinois Hires Heroes Consortium, an innovative new program that will recruit Veterans and identify Veteran-friendly businesses. Today’s action is the latest in a series of initiatives that will help Veterans re-enter the civilian workforce and strengthen the Illinois economy through policies that support business growth.
“Our Veterans are the best trained in the world. Our business owners are the backbone of our growing economy. Bringing them together helps our returning soldiers find civilian work, helps our entrepreneurs identify expert talent, and helps our residents patronize stores and operations that are proven to be Veteran friendly,” Gov. Quinn said.
Illinois Hires Heroes Consortium (IHHC) is a business alliance where owners agree to implement a series of Veteran recruitment, training and retention practices. Consortium members are then rewarded through no cost recruitment of Veterans and the ability to exclusively display the IHHC logo, which will be a tell-tale sign to consumers that the company meets specific goals to actively hire and support Veterans.
IHHC members will be displayed prominently on websites and materials operated by the Illinois Department of Employment Security and the Illinois Department of Veterans’ Affairs, which will jointly administer the Consortium. To qualify, employers must meet specific goals with regard to recruiting practices, human resource training, and retention and support practices. Business can apply at illinoishiresheroes.com
Gov. Quinn’s support of Illinois soldiers and those who employ them is well-known. Earlier this summer, Gov. Quinn raised the $1,200 state tax credit to $5,000 annually for businesses that hire qualified Veterans. Gov. Quinn has made it easier for Veterans and spouses relocating to Illinois to more quickly obtain professional licenses required in some occupations, and has directed the Illinois Secretary of State’s office to add a unique distinction to driver’s licenses and identification cards so Veterans are immediately identified for services, benefits and appreciation. The Governor also has been instrumental in coordinating Veteran specific job fairs and career expos across Illinois as well as creating the Illinois Veteran Conservation Corps and Illinois Veteran Recreation Corps to help young, unemployed Veterans build additional skills through meaningful work.