America's public workforce system should work for all - especially those facing barriers to employment. The number of individuals experiencing barriers to getting and keeping a job is high and rising. With the right access to employment, education, training and support services, these job seekers can be America’s next generation of skilled workers. Without access to these opportunities large numbers of Americans will be disconnected from employment and unable to meet employer demands - contributing to the erosion of American families and communities and weakening American economic competitiveness.
Members of the House of Representatives released two starkly different proposals aimed at reauthorizing the Workforce Investment Act (WIA). The Workforce Investment Improvement Act of 2012 (HR4297) and the Workforce Investment Act of 2012 (HR4227).
The National Transitional Jobs Network delivered its recommendations to House Committee Members in a letter outlining how these two proposals measure up to the NTJN's recommendations for WIA reauthorization. In the letter, we told House Members that H.R. 4297 fails to adequately account for and prioritize the employment and service needs of job seekers with barriers to employment.
The House Committee on Education and Workforce will mark-up H.R. 4297 on Thursday, June 7. The mark-up will further determine the priorities and goals of America's public workforce development system and how well our system will take into account and serve the employment needs of all job seekers - including those experiencing barriers to getting and keeping a job. We urge you to tell your member of Congress that you want a public workforce system that works for all for an economy that works for all. Tell your member of Congress that any WIA reauthorization proposal should:
- Adopt a comprehensive definition of individuals with barriers to employment. Include Transitional Jobs programs as an allowable use of training funds and define the strategy and its components as allowable uses of Workforce Investment Act (WIA) training funds.
- Reverse the elimination of the priority of service requirement and the repeal of vital, targeted programs to support the specific needs and goals of individuals with barriers to employment.
- Adopt a performance accountability system that takes into account the economic conditions and characteristics of participants in order to promote services to individuals with barriers to employment.
Tell your member of Congress that you want a public workforce system that works for all - for an economy that works for all.
Here's How You Can Weigh In:
Put it in Writing.
Tie up the Phone Lines.