Legislation to Expand Job Opportunities for Military Spouses Advances

Thursday, May 21, 2020

SACRAMENTO, CA – Today, Assembly Bill (AB) 2549, authored by Assemblymember Rudy Salas (D-Bakersfield), passed with bipartisan support out of the Assembly Business and Professions Committee. The bill streamlines and recognizes specific licenses earned in other states for jobs when military spouses move to California. Military spouses will have the opportunity to qualify for their licenses by passing California licensure tests in an expedited manner.

 

“We need to help our military families find immediate employment and put food on the table,” said Assemblymember Salas. “This bill will cut red tape and speed up the process for transferring earned professional licenses for military families when their spouse is called to serve our country.”

 

Approximately 35 percent of military spouses work in a profession that requires a license in order to be employed. Although a spouse may be licensed for a job in one state, when they move to California, the process of transferring a license or applying for a new license can be burdensome and take an unnecessarily long amount of time before a license is ultimately issued.

 

“Licensure issues affecting career portability for the spouses of military service members has been a priority for the Department for several years,” said Kelli May Douglas, Southwest Regional Liaison for the Department of Defense - State Liaison Office. “As our military members and their families move from state to state, the ability for military spouses to transfer their licenses in order to obtain employment upon a new military assignment is very important to their career sustainability and their families’ financial stability.  Policies to enhance existing licensure provisions for military spouses, such as is provided within AB 2549, serve to relieve one of the many stressors of frequent military moves.”

 

Military families are often at a unique disadvantage when it comes to finding employment because they are frequently moving. In fact, the annual percent of the military spouse population that moves to different states is 14.5 percent – compared to 1.1 percent for civilian spouses.

 

AB 2549 now moves on to the Assembly Appropriations Committee.

 

 

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Assemblymember Salas represents part of the City of Bakersfield, the cities of Arvin, Hanford, Corcoran, Delano, Lemoore, McFarland, Shafter, Wasco, and the communities of Armona, Avenal, Buttonwillow, Home Garden, Kettleman City, Lamont, Lost Hills, Stratford and Weedpatch.