President Trump signed an executive order calling on federal agencies to better recruit military spouses, also tasking agencies with developing new strategies to remove barriers to spousal employment. The order doesn’t create new hiring incentives but says agencies should promote those already in place. Trump is also calling on The Office of Personnel Management to educate agencies on those processes.
Military spouses currently have a couple of different options when applying for federal positions:
- They can apply non-competitively to vacant positions, OR
- Take advantage of the Priority Placement Program when moving with their spouse to a new duty location.
The Priority Placement Program gives spouses an edge when applying to a position at their new locations, however, it doesn’t supersede veterans’ preference.
Trump added that military partners be given more telework opportunities also.
He also directs agencies to brainstorm ways to improve license portability and recommend new ways to ease spousal hiring.
“Military spouses have already shown the utmost devotion to our nation, and we want to show you our devotion in return,” Trump said. “We will now ensure that you have better access to federal jobs. By taking this action today, we are leading by example and encouraging American businesses across the country to expand job opportunities for our incredible and talented and highly educated military spouses.”
Kelly Hruska, the government relations director for the National Military Family Association said, “Obviously, the federal government can’t hire every military spouse, but it’s definitely a step in the right direction. We’re hopeful it will help those military spouses interested in federal employment.”
Trump went on to say, “America owes a debt of gratitude to our military spouses. We can never repay you for all that you do, and we know what you do, and your spouse knows what you do. We can never repay you for that, but we can and will give you opportunities you deserve.”