Military families face employment obstacles due to lifestyle, says military spouse, CEO of advocacy group

Military spouses often face employment obstacles due to their lifestyles, according to Kathy Roth-Douquet, a military spouse and the CEO of military families advocacy group, Blue Star Families. 

"The vast majority [of military spouses] work off base, and in fact live off base. Military families now don't live on installations," Roth-Douquet told Hill.TV's Krystal Ball and Buck Sexton on "Rising." "Eighty percent of them are in our communities and are in every zip code. So, most of them are actually unemployed."

"Most surveys show over 20 percent unemployment rate for spouses actively seeking work in the last four weeks, and we have a national unemployment rate at about 3.9 percent," she continued. 

Roth-Douquet said military spouses often struggle with staying employed because they are frequently required to move on short notice. 

Spouses face additional problems when they are in a field that requires them to have a state-specific license to perform their work, but they no longer live in a state in which they are licensed.

"If you're moving on government orders, I think that we could say it's a national security requirement that military spouses work because Americans, middle-class Americans, working-class Americans actually need two incomes. So this loss of the second income is really crippling for military families," Roth-Douquet said. 

However, she said that some laws help alleviate those struggles by allowing state laws to become federalized for military spouses.

Roth-Douquet's organization, Blue Star Families, was founded by military families and is aimed at addressing the employment challenges they face. 

Her interview was apart of Hill.TV's weekly "Freedom to Flourish" series, which is presented by Koch Industries. 

— Julia Manchester