Latest News on Corporations Signing on to Pledge
2.3.14 - Media Companies Join Presidential Employment Initiative Pledge Not to Screen Out Long-Term Unemployed in Hiring Processes - By: John Eggerton
A host of major media companies have signed on to a White House effort to hire the long-time unemployed, which the President called for in his State of the Union speech.
The President met Friday with the CEO's of a number of companies who had agreed to help in that effort, which is essentially to pledge that advertising for jobs does not discourage the long-term unemployed and that there are not hiring screens that disadvantage them.
The media companies signed on include AT&T, CBS, Comcast (NBC), Disney (ABC), Time Warner Cable and Viacom.
Following the meeting, Time Warner Cable CEO Rob Marcus made the point that TWC was "reaffirming" its "long-held practice" of providing equal employment opportunities to those who had been out of work for an extended period of time.
"We thank President Obama for including us in the White House event focused on this important labor issue, and have updated our EEO statement to make it clear that job applicants will not be disadvantaged based on their current employment status," he said in a statement.
The White House issued a hiring best practices document that it says over 300 companies have signed on to.
Here's a list of some of the companies supporting the President's initiative, with links to the employer's hiring/careers websites where availabl
A White House statement reports that the companies have pledged to remove barriers that may prevent qualified long-term unemployed job seekers from applying or being fully considered for jobs by:
1. Ensuring that advertising does not discourage or discriminate against unemployed individuals.
2. Reviewing screens or procedures that we use in our recruiting and hiring processes so they do not intentionally or inadvertently disadvantage individuals from being considered for a job based solely on their unemployment status.
3. Reviewing current recruiting practices to ensure that we cast a broad net and encourage all qualified candidates to consider applying.
4. Sharing best practices including success we have achieved with hiring the long-term unemployed in our own company – within our organization and across our supply chain, with staffing firms, our employer associations and the broader business community.
The President and all his administration are in our corner and are working hard to give us all the respect we all deserve...I have great hope for progress and thank them all. He deserves respect too and we need to help him with that removing all those who are working for themselves. We owe him a congress for his last two years that will work with him for us and respect all Americans.
Remarks by the President on Long-Term
FACT SHEET: Opportunity For All – The President’s Call to Action to Give the Long-Term Unemployed a Fair Shot
States with largest percentage of LTU
Here's a list of some of the companies supporting the President's initiative, with links to the employer's hiring/careers websites where available.
Remarks by the President on Long-Term East Room
11:39 A.M. EST
THE PRESIDENT: (Applause.) Thank you. Thank you so much. Thank you, everybody. (Applause.) Everybody, please have a seat.
Well, first of all, let me just thank Erick for being here, for sharing his story, for his service to our country. I hope that listening to Erick here, everybody recognizes what a great success story this is, but also the notion that somebody with this kind of skill and talent was having difficulty finding a job indicates the challenge that we face. And I want to thank all of you, business leaders, and philanthropists, elected officials, all levels and members of my Cabinet and the administration, not only for coming but for committing to more success stories for people like Erick, making sure that everybody in this country who wants to work has a chance to get ahead and not just get a paycheck, but also the dignity and the structure that a job provides people.
On Tuesday, I delivered my State of the Union address. And I said what while the economy is getting stronger -- and businesses like yours have created more than 8 million new jobs over the past four years, our unemployment rate is lower than it’s been in over five years -- we all know we’ve still got a lot more to do to build an economy where everybody who is willing to work hard and take responsibility can get ahead. We’ve got to do more to restore opportunity for every American.
And the opportunity agenda I laid out begins with doing everything we can to create new jobs here in America -- jobs in construction and manufacturing; jobs in American innovation and American energy. There are steps we can take to streamline our tax code, to incentivize companies to invest here. There are things that we can do to make sure that we are continuing to lead the world in innovation and basic research. We’ve got a whole lot of infrastructure we can build that could put people to work right away. We’ve got a couple trillion dollars’ worth of deferred maintenance in America, and the ramifications of us taking that on would be significant. So we’ve got to grow faster and put more shoulders behind the wheel of expanding economic growth.
Step two is making sure that every American has the skills to fill those jobs. Step three, we’ve got to guarantee every child access to a world-class education, from early childhood to college to a career. (Applause.) And step four, we’ve got to make sure that hard work pays off -- with wages you can live on, savings you can retire on, health insurance that’s there for you when you need it.
Today, we’re here to focus on that second point: connecting more ready-to-work Americans with ready-to-be-filled jobs, so that folks who are out of work can apply the skills that they’ve already got. And getting people back on the job faster is one of our top priorities. But I have to confess, last month, Congress made that harder by letting unemployment insurance expire for more than a million people. And each week that Congress fails to restore that insurance, roughly 72,000 Americans will join the ranks of the long-term unemployed who have also lost their economic lifeline.
And for our fellow Americans who have been laid off, through no fault of their own, unemployment insurance is often the only source of income they’ve got to support their families while they look for a new job. So when Erick was out of work, it’s a lot harder to look for work if you can’t put gas in the gas tank, if you’re worried about whether there’s food on the table for your kid. If Mom isn’t making the rent and paying her phone bill, it’s a lot harder for her to follow up with a potential employer. Unemployment insurance provides that extra bit of security so that losing your livelihood doesn’t mean you lose everything that you’ve worked so hard to build. And that’s true whether you’ve been out of work for one month or six months.
But folks who have been unemployed the longest often have the toughest time getting back to work. It’s a cruel Catch-22 -– the longer you’re unemployed, the more unemployable you may seem. Now, this is an illusion, but it’s one that unfortunately we know statistically is happening out there. According to one study, if you’ve been out of work eight months, you’re likely to get called back for an interview only about half as often as if you’ve been out of work one month -- even with the identical résumé. So we are here tonight to say that’s not right -- because we know there are folks like Erick, all across this country, who have enormous skills, enormous talents, enormous capacity. But they need a chance.
I invited Misty DeMars to my speech on Tuesday night. A mother of two young boys, she’d been steadily employed since she was a teenager, put herself through college, had never collected unemployment benefits, never depended on the federal government -- extraordinarily impressive young woman. When she lost her job to budget cuts, she couldn’t find another, she turned to unemployment insurance to make sure she and her husband could keep the new home they had just spent their life savings to buy. And as I said on Tuesday, she wrote to me and said, “I’m confident I’ll find a job. I will pay my taxes. I will raise our kids in the home that we purchased in a community that we love. Please give us this chance.” And I thought that spoke for so many Americans out there -- just give us this chance.
They’re our neighbors, they’re our friends -- young and old; black, white; men, women; PhDs and GEDs. The interesting thing, by the way, is statistically the long-term unemployed are oftentimes slightly better educated, in some cases better qualified than folks who just lost their job. Just because you’ve been out of work for a while does not mean that you are not a hard worker. It just means you had bad luck or you were in the wrong industry, or you lived in a region of the country that’s catching up a little slower than others in the recovery.
And I’ve heard from too many of these folks who show up early -- they will outwork anybody. They fill out 100 applications, 200 applications. They’re sending out résumés, still finding time to volunteer in their community, or helping out at church. Sometimes they have more experience and education and skill than newly unemployed Americans. They just need that chance.
Somebody will look past that stretch of unemployment, put it in the context of the fact that we went through the worst financial and economic crisis in our lifetimes, which created a group of folks who were unemployed longer than normal. They just need employers to realize it doesn’t reflect at all on their abilities or their value. It just means they’ve been dealing with the aftermath of this really tough job market, and all they need is a fair shot. And with that shot, an out-of-work young person can get the critical experience he needs to improve his employment prospects for the rest of his life. With that shot, someone with decades of experience could get back in the game and show a younger worker the ropes. We can give them that shot. And that’s what today is all about.
And we really don’t have an alternative, because giving up on the unemployed will create a drag on our economy that we cannot tolerate. Giving up on any American is something America cannot do. And Erick I think made an important point during his early remarks. Oftentimes folks, no matter how skilled you are, how confident you are, you get discouraged. And that affects people’s physical health. It affects their mental health. And over time, you can have a negative feedback where it becomes harder and harder for folks to get back in the game because they're just getting so many discouraging messages. And that can have long-term impact, particularly if it’s early on in a young person’s career.
So while Congress decides whether or not it’s going to extend unemployment insurance for these Americans, we’re going to go ahead and act. We know what works, and we’re going to go ahead and see what we can do without additional legislation to make some serious dents in the long-term unemployment problem.
We know what works for employers and employees alike. I spoke on Tuesday about Andra Rush, the head of Detroit Manufacturing Systems. She was with us at the State of the Union, sitting with the First Lady. When she was staffing up her new factory, she worked with the local American Jobs Centers -- federally funded -- to hire people who were out of the job but ready to work. On average, they’d been unemployed for 18 months. Today, she says, they are some of her best employees.
Greg Merrity is here today. Greg has been working in sales for 30 years. When he lost his job in December 2011, for the first time in his life he found himself struggling to capitalize on decades of work experience. After months of sending out résumés, pounding the pavement, Greg’s unemployment insurance ran out. And he began, like Erick described, to start feeling hopeless and start feeling useless. And last year, he got hooked up with an organization called Skills for Chicagoland’s Future –- which actually got its start thanks in part to the great work of Penny Pritzker, our Secretary of Commerce, as well as my former Chief of Staff, Rahm Emanuel.
And so this intermediary trains folks like Greg with the skills they need to get placed right away in one of the local companies. And just two weeks after enrolling, Greg was back on the job, helping people get signed up for the health insurance they need. And Greg said, “SCF made me feel relevant again -– like I have something to offer.”
So today, more than 80 of the nation’s largest businesses, over 200 small- and medium-sized businesses are announcing their commitment to a set of Best Practices, like Greg and Misty and Erick can access, and feel as if they can have a partner in getting back on the job and making the contributions that we know they can make. And so I want to thank all the companies who have made this commitment. (Applause.)
With the support of Andrew Liveris and Ursula Burns, chairing the Business Council, and Randall Stephenson at the Business Roundtable, as well as the Society for Human Resource Management, we’ve engaged employers of all sizes, all around the country -– including many who are here today –- to commit to a set of inclusive hiring policies –- from making sure recruiting and screening practices don’t disadvantage folks who have been out of work, to establishing an open-door policy that actively encourages all qualified applicants.
And, of course, it’s only right that the federal government lead by example. So today, I am directing every federal agency to make sure we are evaluating candidates on the level, without regard to their unemployment history. Because every job applicant deserves a fair shot.
And I just had a chance to meet with some of the CEOs who are making these commitments. Some of them are already participating with what’s going on in Chicago. And they had some great ideas about what they know works.
For example, one of the things that we’re going to have to examine is the impact of credit histories on the long-term unemployed. If you’ve been out of work for 18 months, you may have missed some bills. That can't be a barrier then for you getting to work so you can pay your bills. But unfortunately, we’re setting up some, in some cases, perverse incentives and barriers. But in some cases what I heard from the CEOs is it was just a matter of let’s pay attention to this. Let’s see if we’re doing everything we can to look at every candidate on the merits.
And I was really grateful to all of them for stepping up in this way. And I’m confident that as a consequence of this initiative we’re going to see some progress all across the country.
Going back to Greg, his life was turned around because of a partnership that really cares -- not just because he got a fair shot, but because he had advocates who helped him earn the skills he needed to land a job that made sense for him. And so that’s why we’re excited to have programs like Chicagoland’s Future and Platform 2 Employment, and many others that are represented in this room. As important as it is for the businesses to make these commitments, it’s great to have these intermediaries and nonprofits who are also able to show success, even with folks who have been out of work for a long, long time.
And my administration is going to partner with the business community and the nonprofit sector. I’ve asked Joe Biden to lead an across-the-board reform of all our training programs, working with Secretary of Labor Tom Perez, Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker, to make sure that our job training programs have a single mission: train Americans with the skills employers need, and then match them to the good jobs that need to be filled right now. That's what we have to prioritize. (Applause.)
And today I’m announcing that the Department of Labor is going to put forward $150 million in a Ready to Work Partnership competition to support more partnerships that we know work –- innovative collaborations between local governments, major employers, nonprofits all designed to help workers get the skills they need and build bridges to the jobs that require them.
So even though our economy is getting stronger, it’s not going to be enough until those gains translate into better opportunities for ordinary folks like Erick who have the skills, have the desire, just need a chance. We’re going to keep on knocking down barriers to re-employment so more of the nearly 4 million long-term unemployed Americans can regain the stability and security that a good job brings their families -- and, by the way, so that they have more money to spend on local businesses, which will lift the entire economy up and create a virtuous cycle instead of a negative one.
We’re going to keep encouraging employers to welcome all applicants. You never know who is going to have the next great idea to grow your business. We’re going to keep building new ladders of opportunity for every American to climb into the middle class. It’s good for our economy, but it’s also good for our people.
We are stronger, as I said on Tuesday, when America fields a full team. So I just want to thank all the businesses here for your commitments; all the nonprofits here for the work that you’re already doing on the ground. We are going to scale this up. We are going to make this happen. Most of all, I want to thank Erick and some of the other folks who have experienced success -- because as I told Erick before we came out here, when folks see him doing well, that gives them hope, and it reminds us that we can’t afford to let such incredible talent be wasting away. We’ve got to get those folks back in the game, and that’s what I’m committed to doing and I know Joe is, as well.
So thank you very much. I’m now going to sign our new federal commitment. I appreciate you. And after this I think you guys still have some more work to do. (Applause.)
FACT SHEET: Opportunity For All – The President’s Call to Action to Give the Long-Term Unemployed a Fair ShotClick here to see a list of best practices on recruiting and hiring the long-term unemployed -- and a list of signers.
Read a report on the importance of addressing the negative cycle of long-term unemployment.
Year of Action: Making Progress Through Executive Action
Today, following up on his call to action, the President is meeting with CEOs whose companies have agreed to take steps to help give the long-term unemployed a fair shot at a job, and will announce new steps to expand partnerships that connect the long-term unemployed to good jobs.
After the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression, our economy has made significant progress, as businesses have added 8.2 million jobs over the past 46 months. But a remaining legacy of the recession is the crisis of long-term unemployment. Too many Americans who found themselves out of a job through no fault of their own have struggled to return to work. At a time when we as a nation should be helping those who are long-term unemployed find new jobs, we should never have taken an abrupt step backwards by cutting off their unemployment insurance, which has already hurt 1.6 million Americans since the end of last year and is estimated to hurt 4.9 million workers by the end of 2014. The President urges members of both parties to come together right now to extend emergency unemployment insurance. And, the President will continue to work with Congress as well as to take executive action to address the challenge of the long-term unemployed.
---- Reviewing screening and other recruiting procedures so that they do not intentionally or inadvertently disadvantage individuals based solely on their unemployment status
---- Using recruitment practices that cast a broad net and encourage all qualified candidates to apply
---- Sharing best practices for success in hiring the long-term unemployed within their companies and across their supply chains and the greater business community
American Airlines Group, Inc.
American International Group, Inc.
Bank of America Corporation
Best Buy Co., Inc.
Caesars Entertainment Corporation
Cardinal Health, Inc
Computer Sciences Corporation
CVS Caremark Corporation
Darden Restaurants, Inc.
Delta Air Lines, Inc.
E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Company
eBay, Inc.Enbridge Energy Company, Inc.
Ford Motor Company
Frontier Communications Corporation
General Motors Company
Honeywell International Inc.
JetBlue Airways Corporation
JP Morgan Chase & Co.
Liberty Mutual Insurance Group
Marriott International Inc.
Motorola Solutions Inc.
Northrop Grumman Corporation
Pacific Gas and Electric Company
Principal Financial Group
Proctor & Gamble Co.
Prudential Financial, Inc.
The Boeing Company
The Dow Chemical Company
The Gap, Inc.
The Kroger Co.
The McDonald's Corporation
The Walgreen Company
The Walt Disney Company
Time Warner Cable Inc.
United Continental Holdings, Inc.
United Parcel Service of NA, Inc.
Walmart Stores, Inc.
Xerox Corporation Ltd.
21st Century Fox
A.O. Smith Corporation
Accretive Health, Inc.
American Fan Company
American Staffing Association
Apollo Group, Inc.
ASI System Integration, Inc.
Avis Budget Group, Inc.
Brinker International Inc.
Burlington Northern Santa Fe
CDR Financial Services, LLC
Connell Communications Inc.
Delaware North Companies
Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu
Delphi Automotive PLC
Diego And Son Printing, Inc.
Dignity Health Corporation
E.J. Ajax & Sons Co Inc.
Five Star Development, Inc.
Front Street Shipyard, Inc.
Holder Construction Company
Jackson Area Manufacturers
Jos. H. Lowenstein & Sons, Inc.
Jostin Construction, Inc.
Kelly Services, Inc.
Legal Legendary Marina
LSI Industries, Inc.
Magic Johnson Enterprises
Marco Polo Networking
Nautique Boat Company, Inc.
Northern Trust Corporation
Optimax Systems, Inc.
Rhode Island Marines Trade
Rico Enterprises, Inc.
Schneider Finance, Inc.
SPR Companies/TAP Group
Tipco Punch, Inc.
Tishman Speyer Properties
World Wide Technology, Inc
Yale New Haven Health System
A Better Tomorrow Personnel
A D Burnham Agency, LLC
AA Nanomedicine & Nanotechnology
Admin Partners LLC
Advanced Safe & Lock, Inc.
Advisors for Public Health, Inc.
Affiliated Workers Association - AWA
American Family Insurance Torrence Leathers Agency
Arizona Hard Chrome
Artistic Touch Transportation ServiceInc.
Autos Limo Service
B. Zimmer and Company
Badmus Farmers Insurance Agency
Banks Construct Inc.
Beautiful Visions For Windows
Big Muddy WorkshopBluePenny Properties, LLC
Body Works Physical Therapy
C&L Catalyst, LLC
Calmon Patient Advocate, LLC
Careplus Home Health Services, LLC
Cascades Home Health Care
Chabot Technologies & Development, Inc.
Charis Business Services, LLC
Choice Healthcare Services, LLC
Clin-Micro Immunology Center
Commercial Stainless, LLC
Concise Concepts LLC
Consultant Pharmacist of Houston
Cox Professional Landscape Services, LLC
Creative Living Associates
D & F Investments, LLC
D&G Home Remodels
D.C. Financial Services
D3 LED, LLC
Davidson Consulting, LLC
DAYKAM Management Consultants, LLC
Deutscher & Daughter, Inc.
Diversified Industries C&IS Inc.
DMV Commercial Cleaning Services
Dumfries Quality Cleaners
Dunes Construction, LLC
Eastern Time, Inc.
Ecossential Solutions, Inc.
Empire Mechanical Air Conditioning & Heating Services
Ethics By Design
Evacus Technologies, LLC
FIT-Fully Integrated Training
Flash Technology Group, LLC
Florida Helps Foundation
Franklin Truck and Auto Solution Inc
Garcia Real Estate Group
Gareth Consulting Firm
Global ESL Academy
Green Sensitive Design, LLC
Gus's General Services
Happy Hour Comedy Power, LLC
Helping Hands Senior Services
Horizon Healthcare Solutions
Intentional Self, LLC
International Computer Concepts, Inc.
Iron Monkey Productions
J.L. Hartley, Inc.
Jacob R. Raitt
JB Technologies, Inc.
John Mullen Home Repair
Johnson Marketing and Management Co.Jones Rehab
JP Accounting Service, LLC
JT Custom Carpentry
Justin James Insurance Consulting, Inc.
Karen Lee Enterprises, LLC
Katherine's Beauty Salon
Kevin J. Check Designs
Kress Ultralight Transport Co.
Lake Front Labs
Larlin Enterprise, Inc.
LaSalle & Company
Laura Rizzardini, Inc.
Law Offices of Goldy Berger
L-FAM Enterprises, Inc.
Loa's Tire & Auto
Marleon International, LLC
Marsh Aron & Associates
McNichol Finance Group
MDI Imported Car Service, Inc.
Michael F. Simonds, CPA
MJ Consulting Group, Inc.
MJS Consulting & Strategic Planning, LLC
Montage Education, LLC
MPGA Technologies, Inc.
Mustardseed Cultural & Environmental Services, LLC
Naylor's Ace Hardware
New Horizon Family Health Services
New Steps Making a Difference, Inc.
Now House Exchange
P/K WESTMORE Inc.
Palette Painting, LLC
Patriot Foundry & Castings
Perry & Westbrook
Philly Office Retail, LLC
Picture It in 3D
Pioneer Overhead Door
Powerhouse Investment & Financial Services, LLC
Precision Works Coatings
Premier Auto Center
Prenchak Home Improvements, LLC
Primary Colors Leasing, LLC
R. Dudley Billing & Provider Services
Ralph Martinez Trucking, Inc.
Red Carr Communications, Inc.
Reliable Underground Service Technicians
Rena's Enterprise, LLC
RMP Strategies, Inc.
RNDI Companies, Inc.
Rolling Veins Mobile Phlebotomy Services
Runner & Stone
Saltons Paradise, LLC
Senior Express USA, LLC
Shamrock Systems, LTD
Sherwood Automotive, LLC
Sholove International, LLC
Sills Ventures, LLC
Smart Energy Solutions
SRISSt Christophers Metaphysical Temple
Steve Fathergill Marketing, LLC
Stoner Law Office
SunBiz Showcase Alliance plc
Synergy Consulting, Inc.
Tall City Electric, Inc.
Terrific Two Cleaning Company Management & More USA
The Hopewell Agency
The Paramount Group
The Powell-Williams Law Firm, PA
Torque Trends, Inc.
Toushea Body Boutique
Uplifting People, Inc.
Urban Design Architect, PA
VA Professional Hearing Center
Valley Metro Security
Van Hoose Associates
Vertech International, Inc.
Village Pet Pals
VLJ Ventures, LLC
Walton Tax Preparation Service
Where Kings And Queens Reside by Sandra, LLC
Wilder Sources, Inc.
Womens Organization Group
Yankee Garden, LLC
Young G's Barbecue Sauce, LLC.
PROPOSALS TO GET THE LONG-TERM UNEMPLOYED BACK TO WORK
- Continuing to Work With Congress to Extend Emergency Unemployment Insurance for Americans Looking for Work. At a time when we as a nation should be helping those who are long-term unemployed find new jobs, we should never have taken a step backwards by abruptly cutting off their unemployment insurance, which has already hurt 1.6 million Americans since the end of last year and is estimated to hurt 4.9 million workers by the end of 2014. The President urges members of both parties to come together right now to extend emergency unemployment insurance.
- Working to Put in Place Job-Driven Training Programs that Connect the Long-Term Unemployed to Work. In addition to his broader efforts to support job growth through investment in areas like infrastructure and manufacturing, the President has called for new, targeted efforts to train the long-term unemployed and connect them to jobs. In the American Jobs Act, for example, and in his subsequent budgets, the President has proposed new, temporary programs that would offer reemployment and training for the long-term unemployed and low-skilled workers. The President’s budget also proposed consolidating and improving the two programs that serve displaced workers in order to double the number of workers that are able to receive training after losing a job through no fault of their own.
NEW PRIVATE COMMITMENTS TO EXPAND MODELS THAT HELP THE LONG-TERM UNEMPLOYED GET BACK TO WORK
- LinkedIn. LinkedIn, the world’s largest professional network, has committed to support select grantees and states from the Administration’s new $150 million fund for Ready to Work Partnerships to help them identify, connect and support the long-term unemployed in their region.
- Skills for America’s Future. Skills for America’s Future, an industry-led initiative launched in partnership with the White House in 2009, is announcing its intention to offer technical support to applicants for the new grants being announced today by the Department of Labor, including the provision of on-line informational resources and briefings. SAF will seek to offer prospective applicants with strategies and approaches reflecting best practices in demand-driven employment strategies that meet employer needs and ensure labor market success for job seekers and the long-term unemployed. SAF and Skills for Chicagoland's Future, the first regional adaptation of SAF's demand-driven workforce development principles, is announcing efforts to support the expansion of SCF's promising model program. SAF has provided Skills for Chicagoland's Future with a grant to launch a new web portal to support the needs of employers and organizations interested in learning more about demand-driven intermediary work or in replicating the SCF model. SAF also announced a grant to the Indianapolis-based Workforce Investment Board, “Indy,” in support of the adoption of demand driven workforce development practices targeting the long-term unemployed. Finally, SAF is announcing its plans to undertake research agenda designed to identify and promulgate a set of best practices for how to effectively engage employers in demand-driven training and employment programs.
- National Fund for Workforce Solutions. With support from the Social Innovation Fund (SIF) and matching funds from a dozen national philanthropies, the National Fund for Workforce Solutions (NFWS) will be awarding $2.5 million in grants this month to 21 rural and urban regions across the U.S. Local communities will match this grant on at least a dollar-for-dollar basis, creating an investment pool of more than $5 million. These resources will be invested in addressing the occupational needs of small/middle-market companies and institutions in key regional industries. Funding will be targeted to upgrade the skills of the long-term unemployed and other disadvantaged populations. Training priorities will be established based on the competency requirements as defined by the hundreds of employers participating in the National Fund’s sectoral industry partnerships.
- Skills for Chicagoland’s Future. Skills for Chicagoland’s Future will lead a groundbreaking expansion of their work including a unique partnership with the Chicago Department of Aviation and announcement of a new two-year $600,000 grant from JPMorgan Chase’s landmark New Skills at Work program which will increase the number of unemployed served in 2014 by 20%. SCF will expand their practice of obtaining annual signed commitments from a multitude of employers to hire the unemployed through SCF. SCF will also launch a new web portal for organizations that have an interest in replicating a demand driven model or companies seeking information on opportunities to address long term unemployment. SCF’s innovative model and approach led to the job placement of nearly 600 unemployed in 2013 with 75% being long term unemployed.
- Per Scholas. Per Scholas is announcing that as of February 3, 2014, it will open a fourth location. Located in downtown Silver Spring, MD, this free IT-Ready job training will serve 80 dislocated workers in its inaugural year, ultimately training over 1,000 area residents by 2020. IT-Ready graduates will be equipped with the IT job skills needed by community employers, which were consulted in preparation for opening. This program will be supported the Creating IT Futures Foundation, Per Scholas’ national expansion partner, and Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Washington, who helped find and furnish the new site, and will be a primary referral partner ensuring that residents from the region receive the support services needed most.
- Goodwill Industries. Goodwill Industries International is announcing its partnership with Accenture to launch GoodProspects® for Credentials to Careers in order to help more Americans, including the long-term unemployed, gain the skills needed for college and career success. The program, which is funded by a $1.5 million grant as part of Accenture’s Skills to Succeed initiative, will help 40 Goodwill® agencies from across the country connect with more than 15,000 people, starting with 10 competitively selected Goodwill agencies that have existing partnerships with community colleges and area businesses. GoodProspects for Credentials to Careers will engage in local credentialing partnerships, conduct regional education and industry summits to develop and strengthen the talent pipeline, and offer Accenture employees and others the opportunity to provide program participants with mentoring and skill-building support. Goodwill will also leverage local training and educational opportunities through community colleges to help address the skills gap in businesses across the country. Finally, GoodProspects for Credentials to Careers will offer career-readiness services such as resume refinement, job-search assistance, soft-skills workshops and access to technology as well as other wrap-around services such as financial coaching, credentialing opportunities, employer referrals, and childcare and mental health services.
- JPMorgan Chase. JPMorgan Chase & Co. recently announced its New Skills at Work initiative, a five-year workforce readiness and demand-driven training initiative. Working closely with local businesses, elected officials, academics and community leaders, JPMorgan Chase will use new data and industry intelligence to direct grants and forge partnerships to help close the skills gap. To achieve this goal, communities need reliable local level data to tell them exactly which skills are needed in which sectors, in order to drive strategic local workforce planning. The data that supports the workforce system today is inadequate; New Skills at Work will address that challenge by developing new data and research to create regional gap reports that analyze the specific skills needs of each community. New Skills will begin its work in nine cities -- Chicago, Columbus, Dallas, Detroit, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, and the San Francisco Bay Area. As part of a commitment to help the long-term unemployed, JPMorgan Chase is announcing today that the gap reports will include an analysis of the challenges that the long-term unemployed face and a picture of the job opportunities available to those who develop specialized skills through focused and effective training. With this data in hand, the public, private and non-profit sectors, including Ready to Work grantees, can join together to give aspiring workers the training they need to meet employer demand in their community.
- AARP Foundation. AARP Foundation is announcing the expansion of its BACK TO WORK 50+ initiative through a new collaboration with the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) and with generous support from the Walmart Foundation. This program movies low-income, unemployed men and women age 50+ from instability to stability by increasing their income through employment in good jobs in their communities. Originally launched as a demonstration project in Denver, CO in 2013, BACK TO WORK 50+ is designed create local coordination of employment services, public benefits application assistance, financial capability and employer engagement to connect 50+ job candidates to specific in-demand jobs in their communities. Over the next two years, AARP Foundation will invest over $2 million to expand the program and reach thousands more older workers who need these important services. As part of the BACK TO WORK 50+ expansion the first 11 community colleges that will become part of the network have been selected and an additional four colleges will be added later in 2014.
- Platform 2 Employment. With support from the AARP Foundation, Citi Community Development and the Walmart Foundation, P2E is announcing the launch of its job readiness program for the long-term unemployed in Orlando, Florida. This caps P2E’s 10 city expansion over the past twelve months that included Chicago, Cincinnati, Dallas, Denver, Detroit, Minneapolis, Newark, San Diego and San Francisco. Over the next year, P2E plans to expand its program to 25 additional cities. Tested across multiple cohorts including participants from all socio economic and ethnic backgrounds, P2E has already placed 203 long-term unemployed into work experience opportunities, with 88% or 179 of these individuals moving on to unsubsidized full-time employment.
- PG&E. In 2014, PG&E will build upon its successful workforce development program, PowerPathway™, by conducting two PowerPathway™ workforce development programs for the long-term unemployed, with a focus on long-term unemployed veterans. Together, these two programs, targeting the greater Fresno area, will provide 48 individuals with resume building and interview skills, technical training, education and other transferrable skills that can be used to help obtain a job in the skilled craft and utility industry. These program will be conducted in partnership with local workforce investment board, community-based and business organizations, and community colleges in the Fresno area, which continues to experience unemployment rates above the state and national average. The energy and transportation industry represents about 10 percent of all employment opportunities in the Fresno region, with many of these jobs requiring specialized skills and education. PG&E’s PowerPathway™ program provides the education and skills training necessary to support individuals seeking not just jobs, but careers in these sectors. PG&E will provide a template to scale and replicate the PowerPathway™ workforce development program targeting the long-term unemployed through state and federal utility organizations, including the California Energy and Utility Workforce Consortia and the Center for Energy Workforce Development.