Press Release

Press Release Formerly Incarcerated Citizens to Receive On-The-Job Training Through Programs Funded With $1.68 Million in Re-Entry Grants

For immediate release:
8/12/2022
  • Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development

Media Contact for Formerly Incarcerated Citizens to Receive On-The-Job Training Through Programs Funded With $1.68 Million in Re-Entry Grants

Michele Campbell, Director of Communications

Commencement speaker addresses their fellow graduates at a commencement ceremony for the Community Work Services Re-Entry Workforce Development Demonstration Program.

Boston, MAToday, the Baker-Polito Administration announced $1.68 million in Re-Entry Workforce Development Demonstration Program grants awarded to 14 organizations. Funds will place formerly incarcerated citizens re-entering the workforce into new occupations where they will receive on-the-job training.

“The efforts of these community organizations, which includes their ability to locally connect individuals and employers, helps improve workforce readiness for those re-entering society,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “These Re-Entry Grants are focused on evidence-based outcomes that best prepare those who have served their time to find employment that helps support themselves and their families.”

The Re-Entry Workforce Development Demonstration Program is an outcome of the Baker-Polito Administration’s Task Force on Economic Opportunity for Populations Facing Chronically High Rates of Unemployment, chaired by the Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development, Rosalin Acosta.

The Task Force found that individuals within prison populations experienced complex needs that require intensive interventions for them to be successful in securing and maintaining employment. Access to adequate re-entry services was identified as a barrier to employment that disproportionally impacts the target populations and leads to greater recidivism.

“Providing the formerly incarcerated with opportunities for on-the-job-training is an important way to address inequities in the Commonwealth’s workforce,” said Labor and Workforce Development Secretary Rosalin Acosta. "Partnering with community organizations through these grants helps those with chronic high rates of unemployment find meaningful career pathways in Massachusetts.” 

The proposed programs aim to create pathways to securing employment for the returning citizens with business partners in high-demand industry fields including construction, transportation, food services, and hospitality.

The Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development (EOLWD) contracted with Commonwealth Corporation (CommCorp) to administer funding to support re-entry programming.

The following is a complete list of the organizations awarded Re-Entry Workforce Development Demonstration Program grants:

Community Action Pioneer Valley, Greenfield – funding amount: $160,000

Community Action Pioneer Valley will work with both Franklin and Hampshire County Sherriff’s Office to implement a training program focused on the Manufacturing Industry. Successful program graduates will be placed into Production Occupation roles at Deerfield Packaging, Hillside Plastics, Western Massachusetts Food Processing Center, or Quabbin Wire & Cable Company, Inc.

Community Work Services, Boston – funding amount: $160,000

Community Work Services will partner with Suffolk & Essex County Sheriff’s Department and offer a training program in the Culinary/Hospitality industry. Successful training program graduates will be placed into Line Cook roles at Star Market & Finesse Hospitality.

Dorchester Bay Economic Development Corporation, Boston – funding amount: $20,000

Dorchester Bay Economic Development Corporation will receive a planning grant to support their internal development and participation in CommCorp-issued technical assistance during a two-month program design period.

Future Hope Apprenticeship & Recovery Program, Boston – funding amount:  $160,000

Future Hope Apprenticeship and Recovery Program will partner with Suffolk County House of Correction and the Massachusetts Division of Youth Services to provide a training program focused on the construction industry. Successful program graduates will be placed into roles as Roofers, Painters, or Carpenter Assistants at either Cross Country Painting, Inc, or Harvey’s Professional Painting.

Interseminarian-Project Place, Boston – funding amount:   $160,000

Project Place plans to partner with South Bay House of Correction to implement a training program focused on the Logistics industry. Successful program graduates will then be placed into roles as Warehouse Associate or Material Mover/Handlers at Essendant and Newmarket Business Association.

Justice Resource Institute dba. STRIVE Boston, Needham – funding amount:   $160,000

STRIVE Boston will partner with the Suffolk and Middlesex County Sheriff’s Offices and implement a training program focused on Health Care industry. Successful program graduates will be placed into Patient Transportation, Environmental Services, & Therapeutic Mentor roles at Brigham & Women’s Hospital & Justice Resource Institute, Inc.

Massasoit Community College, Brockton – funding amount: $160,000

Massasoit Community College plans to partner with Plymouth County Sheriff’s Department to design and implement a training program focused on the Transportation and Construction Industries. Successful program graduates will be placed into Diesel Technician roles at either Boston Freightliner or Waste Management.

New England Culinary Arts Training (NECAT), Boston – funding amount: $160,000

NECAT will partner with Suffolk County House of Correction and MA DOC Boston Pre-Release Center to implement a training program in the Food Service & Hospitality industry. Successful program graduates will be placed into Food Prep Supervisor roles at Encore Boston Harbor, Dig Inn, Whole Foods, SRV, and Hyatt Regency Downtown Boston.

Positive Action Against Chemical Addiction (PAACA), New Bedford – funding amount: $160,000

PAACA plans to work with Bristol County Sheriff’s Office to create a training program focused on the healthcare industry. PAACA will work to successful training program graduates into Recovery Coach roles at High Point Treatment Center, Common Grounds Café, There Is a Solution, and Seven Hills Foundation

Quinsigamond Community College (QCC), Worcester – funding amount: $160,000

QCC will partner with Worcester County Sheriff’s Office to implement a training program in the culinary industry. Successful program graduates will be placed into Food Preparation roles at Snapchef or the Massachusetts Restaurant Association.

WeReach, East Boston – funding amount: $20,000

WeReach will receive a planning grant to support their internal development and participation in CommCorp-issued technical assistance during a two-month program design period.

The Innocent Convicts, Boston – funding amount: $160,000

The Innocent Convicts will partner with the Essex County Sheriff’s department, to offer a training program with a focus on the construction industry. Successful program graduates will be placed in roles as carpenters at Universal Common Ground, Inc., and Youth for Human Rights International, New England.

College Bound Dorchester – funding amount: $20,000

College Bound Dorchester will receive a planning grant to support their internal development and participation in CommCorp-issued technical assistance during a two-month program design period.

The People’s Academy, Boston – funding amount: $20,000

The People’s Academy will receive a planning grant to support their internal development and participation in CommCorp-issued technical assistance during a two-month program design period.

Photo caption: Commencement speaker addresses their fellow graduates at a commencement ceremony for the Community Work Services Re-Entry Workforce Development Demonstration Program.

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Media Contact for Formerly Incarcerated Citizens to Receive On-The-Job Training Through Programs Funded With $1.68 Million in Re-Entry Grants

Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development  

EOLWD manages the Commonwealth’s workforce development and labor departments to ensure that workers, employers, and the unemployed have the tools and training needed to succeed in the Massachusetts economy.
Image credits:  Commonwealth Corporation
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