HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Connecticut officials on Thursday urged employers to take advantage of new state and federal financial incentives and hire returning veterans, many of whom are having difficulty finding work.

While figures vary depending on demographic groups and regions, unemployment rates for veterans are higher than the regular unemployment rates, both nationally and in Connecticut. Out of 11,000 post-9/11 veterans in Connecticut, Sen. Richard Blumenthal estimated that 1,700 are unemployed.

The Congressional Joint Economic Committee, citing 2010 figures, said the unemployment rate for post-9/11 veterans in Connecticut was 15.5 percent, compared with 11.5 percent nationally. For all veterans, the unemployment figure in Connecticut was 9.2 percent, compared with 8.7 percent nationally.

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