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Statement on Veteran Eligibility and Priority of Service

Priority of service for veterans and eligible spouses requires program operators to give first consideration for participation in a program to those veterans and eligible spouses who meet the eligibility criteria for that program. In order to receive priority for participation in a grantee's OJT NEG project, veterans and eligible spouses must meet the eligibility requirements for this grant. Individuals who have been separated from full-time, active duty military service, as well as individuals who have been demobilized from full-time Federal service in National Guard or Reserve units meet the dislocated worker criterion. In contrast, individuals who have retired from full-time, active duty military service do not meet the dislocated worker criterion.

Priority of service also requires that veteran and eligible spouse participants receive priority throughout the full array of services provided. Therefore, veteran and eligible spouse participants are to receive priority at all stages of the OJT NEG service delivery process, including assessment, matching and referral for OJT placement.

Grantees are responsible for determining which participants are appropriate for referral to OJT positions, as specified in Sections (C)(IV) and (C)(V) of their Implementation Plans. Grantees also are responsible for referring appropriate participants to employers for placement in OJT positions. However, the selection decision for hiring to fill the OJT position remains with the employer.

Implementation Resources

A Protocol for Implementing Priority of Service for Veterans and Eligible Spouses

Implementing Priority of Service for Veterans and Eligible Spouses in all Qualified Job Training Programs Funded in whole or in part by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) - TEGL 10-09

Veterans' Priority Provisions

As a matter of background, the JVA (P.L. 107-288) establishes provisions for priority of service to Veterans. The purpose is to provide priority of service to Veterans and spouses of certain Veterans for the receipt of employment, training, and placement services in any workforce preparation program directly funded, in whole or in part, by the Department. To obtain priority of service for a specific program, a Veteran or eligible spouse must meet the statutory definition of a "covered person" and also must meet any other statutory eligibility requirements applicable to that program. The Department issued the final rule to implement priority of service in qualified job training programs on January 19, 2009. During FY 2010, ETA and VETS issued joint guidance on November 10, 2009, through Training and Employment Guidance Letter (TEGL) 10-09 and Veterans Program Letter (VPL) 07-09 to provide additional details on the expectations for implementing Priority of Service for Veterans and eligible spouses under Department of Labor funded job training programs.