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Local Employment Agency Targeting Vets

Scott Olson Getty Images News

A Yakima employment service prides itself on putting veterans and their families first, and now, they’ve taken it one step further.

ACTNOW Human Resources and Development has been around for 20 years, but just two months ago they added a division that specifically targets veterans.

Jon Ison knows what it’s like to serve his country overseas and then come back home searching for work. “I understand walking that mile and I had a son that was deployed so I understand what it’s like on the side of the person that’s staying home and what’s going on,” he said.

Ison is heading up the new division for ACTNOW. He alone handles veteran applicants free of charge and helps match their skill set to employment opportunities.

“They’re all heroes, and I really want to be a part of helping them and seeing if I can help them,” said Ison. “And that’s what we’re trying to do is we’re trying to put people to work.”

“They say, well I was a tank specialist, well okay but what does that mean for a civilian job,” said Robyn Heilman, ACTNOW Owner. “So we have the resources and the ability to help them transfer those skills.”

Veterans aren’t the only ones getting help. Their family members are too. Ison says he sees around five people a day and has put nearly 40 veterans and their dependents back to work in a span of two months. However, they’re still looking for more qualified applicants to fill job openings.

“We’re just amazed at the response from the employers,” says Heilman. “They’re all for it. We’re so excited. In fact, right now we’re kind of like deer in headlights because so many employers have come forward.”

The staff said because there is such a high demand, vets or their family members can come in with the right set of skills for a particular job, and it’s not uncommon for them to head to work the next day.

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