- Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development
Media Contact for $2M Awarded to Train Unemployed or Underemployed Workers for In-Demand Jobs
Charles Pearce, Director of Communications - Exec. Office of Labor and Workforce Development
Massachusetts — Two million in grant awards will fund training that aims to assist 445 unemployed or underemployed people who need targeted support fill in-demand jobs in construction, finance and insurance, information technology, social assistance, and transportation, the Baker-Polito Administration announced today.
Nine public-private partnerships between local businesses, unions, education and training providers, and MassHire Workforce Boards and Career Centers will run two-year programs across Massachusetts with their awarded Senator Kenneth J. Donnelly Workforce Success Grants and matching contributions of at least 30 percent.
Each program aims to train and place unemployed or underemployed Massachusetts residents into in-demand regional occupations with a starting wage of at least $14.25 per hour.
“Recovering from the economic challenges created by the COVID-19 pandemic requires investments that keep our local businesses competitive and help workers whose livelihoods have been undermined by this global public health emergency,” said Gov. Charlie Baker. “These grants and the programs they fund are important for an equitable economic recovery across the Commonwealth.”
The Donnelly Workforce Success Grants are funded through the Workforce Competitiveness Trust Fund (WCTF), which invests in programs that serve people across Massachusetts whose life experiences and circumstances make it difficult for them to succeed in employment without targeted support.
That includes underemployed people who rely on aid from public benefits to support their families, individuals who have been disconnected from the workforce for a long period, and people who have not been able to complete formal schooling. Other participants may face barriers to work due in part to not speaking English as their first language, past involvement with the criminal justice system, or health problems such as a disability or substance use history. A very real circumstance for many people right now is having been suddenly laid off due to COVID-19.
“Half of lower-income Americans have reported household job or wage loss due to COVID-19, according to a Pew Research Center survey conducted in mid-April, and both the health and economic impacts of the pandemic have fell disproportionately on people of color,” said Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito. “Investing in our people will help those facing the greatest financial challenges find stability and security while strengthening our businesses and driving economic growth.”
The Workforce Competitiveness Trust Fund is administered by Commonwealth Corporation on behalf of the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development.
“After months of working to ensure that over one million people in Massachusetts get the unemployment and pandemic financial relief that they need to stabilize their families, the urgency now is re-employment, and we know that there will not be a one-to-one correlation between the jobs that people left and the jobs they return to because of the COVID-19 shock,” said Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development Rosalin Acosta. “Investing in programs like these is critical to helping workers and companies adapt to this ‘new normal.’”
“So many companies and workers have made impressive pivots to remote and digital work in just a few weeks, but workers of color are over-represented among those with digital skill gaps, in part due to longstanding racial and ethnic disparities in access to education and training, financial resources and career-path jobs,” said Commonwealth Corporation President and CEO Christine Abrams. “We need to continue making these investments so that Massachusetts’ recovery leaves no one behind.”
The grant awards are as follows:
- Apprenti — $225,000: Partnership proposes to provide training and placement services to prepare approximately 40 un/underemployed participants for software developer positions. Partners include: Wayfair, Liberty Mutual, Harvard University Information Technology, Boston Private Industry Council, MassHire Downtown Boston Career Center, and Launch Academy.
- Asian American Civic Association — $245,000: Partnership proposes to provide training and placement services to prepare 48 un/underemployed participants for banking and finance positions. Partners include: Bank of America, East Boston Savings Bank, Citizens Bank, MassHire Metro North Workforce Board, and Asian Task Force Against Domestic Violence.
- Building Pathways — $240,000: Partnership proposes to provide training and placement services to prepare 90 un/underemployed participants for construction trades positions. Partners include: American Plumbing & Heating, Boston Housing Authority, Building Trade Training Directors Association, Consigli, Dimeo, East Coast Slurry, EM Duggan, JC Cannistraro, Marr, McDonald Electrical, McCusker- Gill, Metro South/West Employment and Training Administration Inc., North Atlantic States Carpenters Training Fund, Sheet Metal Workers Local 17, Suffolk Construction, Sullivan McLaughlin, TG Gallagher, TJ McCartney, TREVIICOS Corporation, and 16 union partners. MassHire partners include the MassHire Boston Workforce Board, MassHire Metro South/West Workforce Board, MassHire South Shore Workforce Board, Metro North MassHire Workforce Board, MassHire Downtown Boston, MassHire Metro North Career Center, and MassHire South Shore Career Center.
- CompTIA — $180,000: Partnership proposes to provide training and placement services to prepare 30 un/underemployed participants for IT Support Specialist positions. Partners include: Welsh Consulting, Apogee IT Services, Cengage, Apprenti, MassHire Boston Workforce Board, MassHire Downtown Boston, and Creating IT Futures Foundation, Inc.
- CyberWarrior Academy Foundation — $160,000: Partnership proposes to provide training and placement services to prepare 27 un/underemployed participants for software developer positions. Partners include Rapid7, Steward Health Care, Abacus Insights, Mass General Brigham, Advoqt Cybersecurity, MassHire Merrimack Valley, MassHire Boston (Boston PIC), MassHire Hampden County, MassHire Merrimack Valley, MassHire Downtown Boston, Riff Analytics, Lawrence Partnership, Tech Talent Exchange, Roxbury Community College, Northern Essex Community College, Holyoke Community College, and Worcester Community Action Council.
- MassHire Central Region Workforce Board — $225,000: Partnership proposes to provide training and placement services to prepare 45 un/underemployed participants for CDL driver positions. Partners include: City of Worcester Human Resources Department, Polar Beverages, Schneider Trucking, Advantage Truck Group (ATG), Highway Driver Leasing (Woman-Owned Business), Atlas Distributing, Inc., The Guild of St. Agnes, Trucking Association of Massachusetts (TAM), MassHire Central Region Workforce Board, MassHire North Central Workforce Board, MassHire Metro South/West Workforce Board, MassHire Career Center Worcester, MassHire North Central Career Center, New England Tractor Trailer Training School, Inc. (NETTTS), JobGet, Worcester Jobs Fund, Worcester Community Action Council (WCAC), United Way of Central MA, United Way of North Central MA, Community Health Network (CHNA9), DTA Worcester Transitional Assistance Office, and the Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission.
- MassHire Greater Brockton Workforce Board — $225,000: Partnership proposes to provide training and placement services to prepare approximately 25 un/underemployed participants for CDL driver positions. Partners include: Sid Wainer & Son, Brockton Area Transit Authority, MassHire Greater Brockton Workforce Board, MassHire Greater Brockton Career Center, MassHire Greater New Bedford Workforce Board, MassHire Greater New Bedford Career Center, MassHire Bristol County Workforce Board, MassHire Bristol County Career Center, MassHire South Shore Workforce Board, MassHire South Shore Career Center, and Parker Professional Driving School.
- MassHire Metro North Workforce Board — $250,000: Partnership proposes to provide training and placement services to prepare 40 un/underemployed participants for construction/facilities maintenance positions. Partners include: Winn Companies, Accutemp Engineering, Central Cooling and Heating, Electrical Dynamics, Inc., Nardone Electrical Corporation, WS Aiken LLC, MassHire Metro North Workforce Board, MassHire Metro North Career Center, Associated Builders and Contractors of Massachusetts, YouthBuild Boston, International Institute of New England (IINE), CONNECT, Medford Vocational Technical High School.
- Morgan Memorial Goodwill Industries — $250,000: Partnership proposes to provide training and placement services to prepare 100 un/underemployed participants for social assistance/human services positions. Partners include: Arbor Associates, Bay Cove Human Services, Children’s Services of Roxbury, Communities for People, Pine Street Inn, The Home for Little Wanderers, Vinfen, Whittier Street Health Center, Massachusetts Council of Human Services Providers, MassHire Boston Workforce Board, MassHire Boston Career Center, Roxbury Community College, and the City of Boston Office of Workforce Development.