Today, U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand announced that the Westchester-Putnam Local Workforce Investment Board in White Plains will receive $9,868,337 in federal funds to help Westchester, Putnam, Dutchess, Rockland and Orange County residents struggling with long-term unemployment find middle-high skilled jobs. These funds will be allocated through the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) Ready to Work Partnership, which supports collaborations between employers, non-profit organizations and job-training programs in order to connect Americans who are ready to work with jobs that are ready to be filled. The Westchester-Putnam Local Workforce Investment Board will utilize these funds for three major initiatives. First, the board will use these funds for outreach and recruitment so that it may better connect workers with the kinds of organizations that are looking to hire. Second, it will provide training and support services to people who are unemployed but require retraining or jobs in information technology, advanced manufacturing, health care and other high-demand industries. Finally, the organization will implement and further develop strategies to increase the number of middle- and high-skilled job placements it helps to support. Westchester-Putnam Local Workforce Investment Board is one of only 23 organizations nationwide to receive funding through the prestigious Ready to Work initiative.
“Westchester, Putnam, Dutchess, Rockland and Orange County residents who have received pink slips, after sometimes working for 20 years or more, know all too well that retraining and support services are crucial in order to hone the skills needed to get back into the workforce. This nearly $10 million in federal funding will now make it possible for the Westchester-Putnam Local Workforce Investment Board to provide retraining to more people and increase its recruitment and placement efforts that are helping those who have been laid off get back on their feet,” said Senator Schumer. “People who are struggling with long-term unemployment can now receive both the additional support services and skills needed to move forward with confidence to the next opportunity. I will continue to fight for this kind of funding, which is a major investment in the people and workforce of the entire Hudson Valley.”
“Every American citizen deserves an opportunity to work in this country,” said Senator Gillibrand. “This investment in the Westchester-Putnam Local Workforce Investment Board will support retraining and job search services for local Hudson Valley residents, so they can earn good-paying jobs and keep them for years to come. This important investment is a step forward that can help those who have been unemployed get back on their feet, enhancing their quality of life and helping them reach their full potential.”
The Westchester-Putnam Workforce Investment Board (WPWIB) provides policy directions and program oversight to the One-Stop Employment Centers and workforce development programs in Westchester and Putnam counties.
The U.S. Department of Labor’s Ready to Work Partnership grants are a part of an administration-wide effort to address the ongoing issue of long-term unemployment. All of the grantees must demonstrate strong partnerships with local employers and industry groups that offer work-based training opportunities, such as paid internships, on-the-job training or registered apprenticeships. Work-based training will allow long-term unemployed individuals to fill in gaps of employment in their resumes, gain first-hand experience with an employer and establish a direct link to permanent employment. For more information, visit: http://www.doleta.gov/readytowork/.