Recovery Spotlight: STATEWIDE Green Corps in California

Authors: ada Great news from California! A coalition of environmental, economic justice, organized labor and workforce development groups secured $10 million in federal stimulus money to develop a STATEWIDE green jobs training corps! Ian Kim, Director of the Green-Collar Jobs Campaign at the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights, writes....
Gov. Schwarzenegger announces $20 million Green Corps program to train 1,000 at-risk young people across the state! Read more at
We are winning! Governor Schwarzenegger just announced a statewide Green Corps program to train 1,000 at-risk youth over the next two years for green careers! At a press conference Monday afternoon, the governor stood next to Oakland Mayor Ron Dellums and declared a commitment to "helping underprivileged kids, protecting the environment, and protecting our economy." Mayor Dellums followed the Governor, saying "Oakland pioneered this idea with the Ella Baker Center, Green For All, and many others. It embraces a very simple, yet extraordinarily elegant, idea: fight pollution and poverty simultaneously. Take those on the margins and put them at the center of these solutions." The California Green Corps will be funded by federal stimulus dollars. Last month, we told you that the Ella Baker Center and our allies -- united as the California Green Stimulus Coalition -- would be advocating for green and equitable uses of California's federal economic recovery funds. We are already celebrating our first major victory! Most importantly, the Governor's administration is asking for our coalition's expertise and guidance in the implementation of this program. The Ella Baker Center, Apollo Alliance, California Conservation Corps, and other partners will work closely with the California Volunteers Agency (which will oversee the program) to ensure California's new Green Corps provides truly effective green career pathways for California's at-risk youth. A few more details about the California Green Corps:
  • The program will train 1,000 youth ages 16-24 over a 20-month period.
  • The $20 million program will receive $10 million in federal stimulus funds, matched by $10 million from public and private sources.
  • There will be at least 10 Green Corps programs throughout the state, and at least one in each of California's 9 economic regions.
  • The program will be housed by the California Volunteers Agency, because it excels at working across regions, sectors and government agencies.
This program is an exciting step forward, one among many the state government must take to deliver on our shared vision of a green economy that includes everyone. Thank you for accompanying us on this journey toward a cleaner, greener, more equitable economy. Green jobs, not jails, Ian Kim Ella Baker Center for Human Rights P.S. In January, I asked you to help save the California Conservation Corps (CCC) during the state's epic budget battle (or shall we call it a budget train wreck?). I am happy -- and relieved -- to report that the CCC made it through intact! In fact, the CCC will be an important partner in the development of the California Green Corps. Thank you to the hundreds of people on our email list who took time to tell Governor Schwarzenneger to do the right thing.

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