Yesterday, The Florida Senate unanimously passed SB 562, Military Occupational Licensure, by Senator Janet Cruz (D—Tampa), which takes aim at the problem of active duty military spouse unemployment. Active duty military spouses face significantly more challenges to entering the Florida workforce than their civilian counterparts, due to the frequency of relocation and licensing requirements imposed by the state. Pre-COVID, military spouses faced a 22% unemployment rate, which was nearly 5 times higher than the national average unemployment rate. These factors make finding long-term, stable, and consistent work difficult for military spouses. SB 562 prioritizes the professional licensure applications of active duty military spouses, waives their licensing fees, and creates an avenue for them to get them credentialed to enter the Florida workforce as soon as possible.
“With MacDill Air Force Base, United States Central Command, United States Special Operations Command, and other major military units based in the heart of my district, I have a special appreciation for the unique issues affecting our nation’s service members and their families. These men and women answered the call of duty and volunteered to serve our country. We have a responsibility to support them in that mission,” said Senator Cruz. “I am extremely proud to sponsor this legislation, which empowers active duty spouses and reduces barriers to workforce entry. I firmly believe that SB 562 will improve economic opportunity and recognize the tremendous sacrifices made by our service-disabled veterans.”
Originally published at https://www.flsenate.gov/Media/PressReleases/Show/4342