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Courtney Announces $5.5 Million U.S. Labor Department Grant To Return 567 CT Unemployed to Work in High-Skilled Growth Industries

October 15, 2014
Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – Today U.S. Representative Joe Courtney (CT-2) announced a $5.5 million grant from the U.S. Department of Labor that will help return 567 unemployed Connecticut workers back to high-skilled growth industries.

The Eastern Connecticut Workforce Investment Board (EWIB) and the Workforce Alliance won a $5.5 million highly competitive grant from the U.S. Department of Labor. The CT Ready to Work Initiative will provide training, support, and job placement services to 567 long-term unemployed workers and veterans over the next four years.

"These resources will help get Connecticut's long-term unemployed back on the job, with the skills they need to compete and succeed,” said Courtney.  “The on-the-job training supported by this announcement is good for job-seekers, for employers who need skilled workers, and for our economic recovery. I applaud EWIB for the excellent work they have already done in helping place 220 eastern Connecticut workers into good jobs across the region--beating federal goals outlined in the previous grant round--and this additional funding is a testament to their continuing success."

The two workforce boards have a history of positive collaboration. Recently, they have surpassed the goals of the Technical Skills Training Grant that placed 454 statewide residents at technical jobs that otherwise might have gone to international workers in the U.S. on H1B Visas.

“Historically, Connecticut has been known for the excellent quality of its workforce.” said John Beauregard, EWIB Executive Director, “This grant will help us maintain that leadership by upgrading the skills of Connecticut workers. Companies grow where talent is readily available.”

The CT Ready to Work Initiative will provide training, supports, and job placement services to 567 long-term unemployed workers in the fields of Information Technology, Engineering and Advanced Manufacturing. The candidate’s opportunities include direct placement, On-the-Job Training (OJT) or participation in technical courses of study, predominantly at partner community colleges, leading to credentials and placement.

Employers will hire the participants as full-time, regular employees and provide them with an average of 14 weeks of training. The employers will be reimbursed for 50%-75% of employee’s wages during the training period. Participants will also receive assistance with resume preparation and other job seeking needs through the Workforce Investment Boards’ One Stop Career Centers.

Workforce Alliance President & CEO William P. Villano said, “This grant does more than put people back to work. It builds Connecticut’s competitive advantage in high-skilled industries by targeting the skills gap in important sectors of the regional economy. All participants will be trained for and placed in career-path positions in one of the targeted fields.”

The grants announced today are part of the federal Ready to Work Partnership initiative. The grants are funded with revenues from the H1-B visa program.

www.workforcealliance.biz

WORKFORCE ALLIANCE, SERVING SOUTH CENTRAL CONNECTICUT: BETHANY, BRANFORD, CHESTER, CLINTON, CROMWELL, DEEP RIVER, DURHAM, EAST HADDAM, EAST HAMPTON, EAST HAVEN, ESSEX, GUILFORD, HADDAM, HAMDEN, KILLINGWORTH, MADISON, MERIDEN, MIDDLEFIELD, MIDDLETOWN, MILFORD, NEW HAVEN, NORTH BRANFORD, NORTH HAVEN, OLD SAYBROOK, ORANGE, PORTLAND, WALLINGFORD, WEST HAVEN, WESTBROOK, WOODBRIDGE

www.ewib.org

EASTERN WORKFORCE INVESTMENT BOARD, SERVING EASTERN CONNECTICUT:   Ashford, Bozrah, Brooklyn, Canterbury, Chaplin, Colchester, Columbia, Coventry, East Lyme, Eastford, Franklin, Griswold, Groton, Hampton, Killingly, Lebanon, Ledyard, Lisbon, Lyme, Mansfield, Montville, New London, North Stonington, Norwich, Old Lyme, Plainfield, Pomfret, Preston, Putnam, Salem, Scotland, Sprague, Sterling, Stonington, Thompson, Union, Voluntown, Waterford, Willington, Windham, Woodstock .

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