Pathways Out of Poverty training grants for green jobs announced!

Authors: Ladan Sobhani Today the Department of Labor announced the award recipients for $150 million in Pathways Out of Poverty grants to train disadvantaged populations for green jobs. This investment, part of the Recovery Act, will allow people who have been left out of our economy to enter the workforce and secure jobs in the new clean-energy economy. Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis said today:
"These Pathways Out of Poverty grants will help workers in disadvantaged communities gain access to the good, safe and prosperous jobs of the 21st century green economy. Green jobs present tremendous opportunities for people who have the core skills and competencies needed in such well-paying and rapidly growing industries as energy efficiency and renewable energy."
(Read the press release from the Department of Labor.) Some of the historically disadvantaged communities that will now be able to access job training through the grants include people who are low-income, homeless, with low-levels of formal education, with a criminal history, with disabilities, and with limited English language proficiency. This is a huge moment for us at Green For All. We’ve been working on securing these grants for more than two years now, and are so excited to see investments that will create real economic opportunity in the green economy for disadvantaged communities. The Pathways Out of Poverty training grants originated in the Green Jobs Act, which Green For All has championed since 2007, working hard with our supporters firstto pass the act and then to get it funded as part of President Obama's Recovery Act. In addition to working on Federal policy and advocacy, Green For All has been working directly to strengthen green job training programs by connecting these programs through our Communities of Practice. We’re proud to say that a number of the grant recipients are members of Green For All’s "Pathways Out of Poverty" Community of Practice. These grants were highly competitive, with only 38 awarded by the Department of Labor out of hundreds of applications submitted. Members of Green For All's "Pathways Out of Poverty" Community of Practice who received competitive grants include:
  • Consortium for Worker Education
  • Los Angeles Community College District
  • Worksystems Inc.
  • Goodwill Industries International
  • The WorkPlace Inc.
  • Multiple partners on local grants, including Seattle Vocational Institute, Got Green, Sustainable Business Network, Laborers Local 10, Sustainable South Bronx, and JFYNetWorks
Community of Practice conference calls have focused on topics ranging from how to form effective partnerships (featuring grant recipient from the LA Community College District) to how to apply for these Pathways out of Poverty grants (featuring grant recipient The WorkPlace Inc.). We’ll continue to work with these programs to make sure the Recovery Act investment translates into real opportunity for communities in need, allowing more Americans to access good jobs and a pathway to middle-class careers. With Congress working on a Jobs Bill and Climate and Energy legislation, the United States has the opportunity in 2010 to ramp up investments in an inclusive clean-energy economy. We must build on the foundation laid by these Pathways out of Poverty grants, so that opportunity in the green economy extends not just to these initial 38 programs, but to every community in America.

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