On Veterans Day, we reflect on the service that more than 21 million men and women have given to our country. About 1.3 million of them served during multiple wars, dating as far back as World War II.
Many veterans now work in a wide range of fields, from manufacturing and retail to transportation and the entertainment industry, as laborers, managers, and executives, according to U.S. Census data. The largest contingent of veterans, about 14 percent, works in public service or administration, which isn’t really surprising given its close relationship to military service.
Not many people may realize, however, that one particular public service – the U.S. Postal Service – has historically been one of the nation’s largest employers of veterans. In 2012, the Postal Service employed about 130,000 former service members – almost a full quarter of its workforce. After all, men and women who were, for example, logisticians, operations managers, human resource workers, or mechanics in the military have skill sets that the Postal Service values and needs.
In the past few years, as mail volume has declined, the Postal Service has trimmed the number of employees to 489,727 in 2013 from a high of 707,485 in 2004. Because veterans and minorities constitute large segments of the Postal Service work force, these cuts have had the greatest impact on them, according to a CNN report. Still, veterans continue to be not only a sizeable but also important part of the Postal Service.
Please join us in saying to our nation’s veterans, “Thanks for your service.”