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December 2017
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AAR affirms rail support for America’s reservists, guardsmen and veterans

The Association of American Railroads (AAR) and the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) today marked the freight rail industry’s long standing commitment to support and hire guardsmen and women and reservists, and pledged to continue the industry’s tradition of extending veterans and service members competitive wage and benefits packages.  Earlier this week, AAR President and CEO Edward R. Hamberger signed an official Statement of Support for the Guard and Reserve on behalf of the association and freight rail industry.  “The railroad industry has for almost two centuries been hiring and supporting the men and women of the nation’s military,” said Hamberger.  “Today, one-quarter of the industry’s workforce is made up of veterans and reservists. We are proud to reaffirm our commitment to our nation’s heroes, and are committed to continuing to connect and support these highly trained men and women with careers on the rails.” “Today, supportive employers in the freight railroad industry are critical to maintaining the strength and readiness of the Nation’s Guard and Reserve Service members. Freight rail industry employers lead the way in ensuring their human resource policies go above and beyond by incorporating policies supportive of Guard and Reserve service,” said Mr. James Rebholz, National Chairman of ESGR. “As an example, many support programs complement military service, by providing pay differential to offset the loss of wages, and extending health care benefits while their employees are mobilized.” Rebholz continued, “Freight railroads consistently show broad support for employees who serve this nation, evidenced by the industry's special tribute to veterans and military education and hiring initiatives. Today’s signing guarantees strong support for employee service in the Guard and Reserve into the future.” In addition to signing the reaffirmation of support, AAR has partnered with the ESGR to boost the railroad job community on its digital employment resource,, a popular website for veterans and active duty military men and women looking for employment opportunities. “With a need to hire 15,000 people this year, one-in-five of which are likely to have military service, we wanted to partner with to help boost the resources available to connect veterans with a new career in the railroad industry,” said Hamberger.  “We like to think these dedicated individuals can go from serving their country in the military, to serving their country by working at a railroad.”