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August 2012, Vol. 135, No. 8
Disability, employment, and income: are Iraq/Afghanistan-era U.S. veterans unique?
Jennifer Tennant is an assistant professor in the economics department at Ithaca College. Email: email@example.com.
At a time when the United States is involved in two major international conflicts, research on the health and economic outcomes of its recent veterans is becoming increasingly important. However, it is difficult to compare the labor force characteristics of recent veterans1 to those of nonveterans and veterans who have not served recently because recent veterans—those who served in the era of Operation Iraqi Freedom2 and Operation Enduring Freedom (Afghanistan), also known as Gulf War era II—are demographically different from the rest of the population. In this study, recent veterans are compared with the combined population of people who have never served in the military and veterans whose service concluded prior to September 2001.
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1 The Current Population Survey Annual Social and Economic Supplement (ASEC) does not identify location of service, just period of service. Therefore, those identified as "recent veterans" in this study served in September 2001 or later, but may have done so anywhere in the world; in addition, their military service may have begun before September 2001. The Bureau of Labor Statistics Employment Situation for Veterans news release with data from August 2011 shows that about 38 percent of the veterans who served at some point since September 2001 did so in Iraq, Afghanistan, or both.
2 Operation Iraqi Freedom was declared over on August 31, 2010; 50,000 troops currently remain in Iraq in a noncombat role to provide training, advice, and assistance to the Iraqi military. See http://www.army.mil/article/44526/Operation_New_Dawn/.
Current Population Survey
Employment and earnings of recent veterans: data from the CPS.—Jul. 2010.
Employment characteristics of Gulf War-era II veterans in 2006: a visual essay.—May 2008.
Are male veterans at greater risk for nonemployment than nonveterans?—Dec. 2007.
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