The Army has selected San Antonio, Texas, as the location for an one-stop transition center for separating service members. Set to open in 2018, the facility will offer assistance to veterans on a number of fronts, including employment, housing, and health care. If the center successfully increases veteran employment in the San Antonio area, the Army may open others across the country to help ensure all veterans have job and housing opportunities when they transition out of the military.
"This is Military City USA,” Robert Naething, deputy to the commanding general of Army North, told Fox 29. “If you're going to try to something new for the Army to assist soldiers, why not try it here?”
The center will be located just outside Fort Sam Houston, which, according to Naething, transition 4,000 people out of the service each year, more than any other transition center in the country. But according to Naething, about 35% of those veterans find themselves unemployed nearly a year into their transition — a number the new center aims to reduce.
For the first time ever, the Army will be working with local civilian doctors, hiring managers, and real estate partners to smooth the transition process. According to Bexar County Commissioner Kevin Wolff, case managers will help veterans in finding houses and doctors, while also job with the area’s top employers. He also said that Toyota, Boeing, and Lockheed Martin currently offer significant employment opportunities in the area, reported News 4 San Antonio.
“It breaks anyone’s heart to see a veteran homeless or struggling,” Naething said. “It just is the right thing to do.”