Zarnecki, Walter

Walter Zarnecki, Candidate for Cook County Commissioner, 8th District

Statement on veterans issues by
Walter Zarnecki

I am an attorney who completed my education at the John Marshall Law School. As such, I am aware that veterans with less than honorable discharges face significant discrimination when it comes to employment and other matters, with unemployment and homelessness as a result.

I would like to see Cook County adopt a Human Rights Ordinance, similar to that of Chicago, where veterans may not be discriminated against on account of discharge status.

There are job training programs for the soon-to-be-released incarcerated, and I would like to see similar programs for veterans who may have difficulty in finding meaningful careers.

Cook County must give veterans preference in hiring for county jobs. While government can not dictate hiring policies to outside companies, it should require large companies, as a condition for getting large county contracts, to have a “shall hire” provision for veterans. After all, these companies profit tremendously from these contracts, so giving job preference to veterans is only fair.

The Cook County Veterans Assistance Commission is grossly underfunded, with the amount of money per veteran far less than our neighboring counties. The amount allocated per veteran should be no less than the average of the collar counties.

The County Care program provides medical care to County residents of low financial means, regardless of citizenship status, at various County clinics. Some of these, including the large one being built in Hanson Park (part of the 8th District), have dental clinics. Cook County veterans, regardless of income, should be able to receive dental care at these clinics, if they are unable to qualify for such treatment through the Veterans Administration.

I welcome your vote in the November 6, 2018, election, so that I might be able to serve veterans of Cook County.

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