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Veterans

 

52,858 veterans in Travis County in 2013

Veterans in Travis County

In 2013, 6.2% of Travis County residents were veterans. Although the veteran population is projected to decline, an increasingly large share of veterans are female. Veterans are often married to other veterans or are single parents. Therefore, many veterans need services that support family well-being, including safe, affordable housing and quality, affordable childcare. Area service providers work with veterans and their families to navigate complex federal systems and ensure that they receive all benefits to which they are entitled. Other local efforts aid veterans in coping with mental health and substance use issues, as well as deterring interaction with the criminal justice system. Local providers have also collaborated to provide services that decrease the number of veterans experiencing homelessness.

Percent of the Population 18 & Over Who Are Veterans, 2013

Locally, a smaller percentage of adults have served on active duty in the military than in the state or nation as a whole. In 2013, 6.2% of Travis County residents were veterans, compared to 7.7% of adults in Texas and 8.1% of adults in the U.S. as a whole. This trend has been true since American Community Survey estimates were first gathered, in 2005.

Graph showing the percentage of the population who were veterans in 2013 in 5 geographical regions: USA, Texas, the Austin-Round Rock-San Marcos MSA, Travis County, and the City of Austin

Definition: Percent of the population, over 18 years old, who served, but are not currently serving, on active duty in the U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, or Coast Guard

Data Source: U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey, 1-year estimates, Table DP02: Selected Social Characteristics

Data Considerations: The American Community Survey samples 3% of the Nation’s population. Due to small sample sizes, margins of error are increased and hard to reach populations may not be accurately represented in the data. Veterans include only individuals who served on active duty. People who served in the National Guard or Reserves are only included in the statistic if they were called up to active duty.

Key Issues that affect veterans

At their 2014 meetings, the CAN Community Council heard presentations by local collaborations, veterans, and service providers, including representatives from Travis County Veterans Services, the City of Austin’s Commission on Veterans Affairs, ECHO’s Veterans Housing Task Group, The Austin/Travis County Military Veterans Peer Network, and the Austin Vet Center. Community Council members discussed the needs and challenges of veterans in our area. Top barriers and challenges identified at these meetings included:

some local efforts to improve the well-being of veterans

system changes recommended to improve the well-being of veterans

the face of veterans in travis county

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» veterans population projection

The Veterans Administration projects a steady decline in the Travis County veteran population through 2043. The VA projects that the local veteran population will decline to 36,486in 2043, from a based of 53,045 in 2013. (Note that VA estimates of the total size of the veteran population differ from Census Bureau estimates due to differing estimation methodologies.)

Graph showing the population projection for veterans in Travis County through the year 2043

 

 

Definition: Travis County population who served, but are not currently serving, on active duty in the U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, or Coast Guard

Data Source: Veterans Administration, National Center for Veterans Analysis and Statistics, The Veteran Population Projection Model 2014

Data Considerations: The estimates in the graph are based on Veterans Administration population projections, based on data from 2011. Projections are subject to uncertainty and future events that may change the size of active duty military personnel

» percent of veterans who are female

 

Locally, females have increased as a share of the total veteran population since 2005. In Travis County, females grew from 5.4% of veterans in 2005, to 10.4% of veterans in 2013. Although females make up a small share of veterans overall, their share of the total veteran population has grown by 93% since 2005.

Graph showing the percentage of the veteran population who are female from the years 2005 - 2013 in 5 geographical regions: USA, Texas, the Austin-Round Rock-San Marcos MSA, Travis County, and the City of Austin

Definition: Percent of veterans who are female

Data Source: U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey, 1-year estimates, Table S2101: Veteran Status

Data Considerations: The American Community Survey samples 3% of the Nation’s population. Due to small sample sizes, margins of error are increased and hard to reach populations may not be accurately represented in the data. Veterans include only individuals who served on active duty. People who served in the National Guard or Reserves are only included in the statistic if they were called up to active duty.

» veterans age structure

The local veteran population tends to skew slightly older than the population of nonveterans. The largest group of veterans is between the ages of 35 and 54- about 27% of veterans fall into this age group. Compared to the U.S. as a whole, the Travis County veteran population tends to be younger.

Graph showing the age structure for veterans and non-veterans in Travis County

 

 

Definition: Veteran and Nonveteran population, by age group

Data Source: U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey, 1-year estimates, Table S2101: Veteran Status

Data Considerations: The American Community Survey samples 3% of the Nation’s population. Due to small sample sizes, margins of error are increased and hard to reach populations may not be accurately represented in the data.

» racial/ethnic breakdown of veterans

 

In Travis County, African-Americans and Whites are slightly over-represented in the veteran population. Whites make up about 67% of the veteran population, compared to about 50% of the overall population. African-Americans make up about 13% of the veteran population, compared to about 8% of the overall population.

Graph showing the age structure for veterans and non-veterans in Travis County

Definition: Veteran and Overall Population, by Race-Ethnicity

Data Source: U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey, 1-year estimates, Table S2101: Veteran Status and Table B03002: Hispanic or Latino Origin by Race

Data Considerations: The American Community Survey samples 3% of the Nation’s population. Due to small sample sizes, margins of error are increased and hard to reach populations may not be accurately represented in the data. By many data collection standards, Hispanic is considered to be an ethnicity rather than a race. The Black and Asian categories on the graph are based on data that may include small numbers of people who also identify as Hispanic.

» period of service

 

About one-third of local veterans served during the Vietnam War. 23.9% of Travis County veterans served during the first Gulf War period and 19.3% served during the second Gulf War period. About 14% of local veterans served during the most recent period alone.

Definition: Percent of veterans who served during each period

Data Source: U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey, 1-year estimates, Table S2101: Veteran Status

Data Considerations: The American Community Survey samples 3% of the Nation’s population. Due to small sample sizes, margins of error are increased and hard to reach populations may not be accurately represented in the data. Categories are not mutually exclusive- veterans may have served in more than one period. Furthermore, the graph above excludes periods of peacetime. About 15% of Travis County veterans served in the period between the Vietnam and Gulf Wars.

» service connected disability rating

 

In Travis County, 11,388 veterans, or 21.5% of veterans, had a service-connected disability. Of veterans who report having a service-connected disability, the highest number report a disability rating of 10% or 20%, although a substantial number report a 70% or higher disability rating.

Definition: Percent of veterans and nonveterans with incomes below the poverty threshold

Data Source: U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey, 1-year estimates, Table B21100: Service-Connected Disability-Rating Status and Ratings for Civilian Veterans 18 years and over

Data Considerations: The American Community Survey samples 3% of the Nation’s population. Due to small sample sizes, margins of error are increased and hard to reach populations may not be accurately represented in the data. A 0% disability rating is different than having no disability rating. A 0% rating indicates that a veteran has a disability but is not entitled to disability compensation from the Veterans Administration. This figure excludes 993 veterans who reported having a service-connected disability but did not report the rating.

how this population fares on dashboard indicators

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» low-income and poverty

Veterans are less likely than nonveterans to have incomes below the poverty level. In 2013, 6.7% of veterans in Travis County had incomes below the poverty level, compared to 15.0% of nonveterans.

Definition: Percent of veterans who served during each period

Data Source: U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey, 1-year estimates, Table S2101: Veteran Status

Data Considerations: The American Community Survey samples 3% of the Nation’s population. Due to small sample sizes, margins of error are increased and hard to reach populations may not be accurately represented in the data. Categories are not mutually exclusive- veterans may have served in more than one period. Furthermore, the graph above excludes periods of peacetime. About 12% of Travis County veterans served in the period between the Vietnam and Gulf Wars.

» unemployment

Veterans in Travis County were slightly less likely to be unemployed than nonveterans. In 2013, the unemployment rate for veterans was 9.8%, compared to 5.8% for nonveterans.

 

Definition: Percent of veterans and nonveterans in the civilian labor force who were unemployed

Data Source: U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey, 1-year estimates, Table S2101: Veteran Status

Data Considerations: The American Community Survey samples 3% of the Nation’s population. Due to small sample sizes, margins of error are increased and hard to reach populations may not be accurately represented in the data.

» education attainment

Veterans in Travis County have a much different educational profile than nonveterans. Veterans are significantly less likely than nonveterans to have less than a high school education. However, veterans are more likely than nonveterans to have some college or an associate’s degree (39.1% of veterans vs. 23.7% of nonveterans).

Definition: Educational attainment of veterans and nonveterans in Travis County

Data Source: U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey, 1-year estimates, Table S2101: Veteran Status

Data Considerations: The American Community Survey samples 3% of the Nation’s population. Due to small sample sizes, margins of error are increased and hard to reach populations may not be accurately represented in the data.

» individuals experiencing homelessness

In Travis County, 176 veterans were experiencing homelessness at the time of the annual Point-in-Time Count. Although, there has been a decline in the number of veterans experiencing homelessness identified in the annual count, local service providers reported serving 1,221 veterans during 2013.

Definition: The number of individuals experiencing homelessness who reported that they were veterans in the annual point-in-time count

Data Source: Ending Community Homelessness Coalition

Data Considerations: Annual point-in-time counts reflect only the number of people who are identified by volunteers as being homeless on a given day each year. In 2010, postponement of the annual point-in-time count due to weather issues lowered the number of participating volunteers and may have affected the number of homeless persons who were identified and counted. Count numbers for 2011, 2012, and 2013 include homeless persons identified through the following programs that had not previously reported numbers for the point-in-time count: Grant/Per Diem Transitional Housing Program, Healthcare for Homeless Veterans (HCHV) Residential Treatment at McCabe Center, and a HCHV Residential Treatment program called A New Entry.