ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ)—First Lady Michelle Obama congratulates Maryland lawmakers on legislation to help military families. State leaders signed the Veterans Full Employment Act passed by the General Assembly this session.

Political reporter Pat Warren reports Michelle Obama was there to see it.

The first lady joined Gov. Martin O’ Malley, Lt Gov. Anthony Brown and House and Senate leaders to witness the signing of the Veterans Full Employment Act.

“I’m here today not just because Annapolis is beautiful, which it is, and I wish I could stay and have ice cream and crab cakes,” the first lady said.

The first lady has set a goal to get all 50 states to pass legislation to help military families transition from service to civilian jobs.

“You all didn’t just ask yourselves ‘Can we do this?’ You asked yourselves ‘How can we do it right? How can we serve our men and women in uniform as well as they’ve served us?’” Obama said.

The Veterans Full Employment Act will help families like Eddie and Jennifer Pilcher, families whose skills, training and education don’t transfer to the civilian workforce because the requirements vary. The Veterans Full Employment Act fixes that.

“So now as long as we get some kind of equivalency this will help tremendously,” said Eddie Pitcher.

“I love the fact that Maryland’s, that our state’s taken the lead like the first lady said on three issues,” Jennifer Pitcher.

“You all are tackling three big issues all at once. You’re helping our veterans obtain professional credentials, you’re helping them earn college credit, and you’re making it easier for military spouses in their careers as they transfer to your state,” Obama said.

Maryland is among 13 states to pass laws helping veterans since February of this year.

The legislation takes effect Oct. 1.

Thirty-six states now have similar laws.


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