Archives for Workforce & Government

Unemployment: The Many Effects

According to May 2013 DOL Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) figures, 11.8 million Americans are unemployed…but seeking employment. Traditionally, BLS numbers do not include unemployed individuals who are not actively job-hunting.  Some economic reports indicate a myriad of reasons, one of which being that unsuccessful jobseekers often become discouraged to the point that they simply give up in their job search. Unemployment affects individuals. It almost goes without saying, but has to be noted that money—or lack thereof—is more often than not a cause of stress, sometimes of a disabling nature.  As reported by the American Psychological Association in Psychological
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Effective Workforce Development Must Include “Soft Skills” Training

According to the DOL’s Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average U.S. unemployment rate, between May 2012-May 2013, was 7.9%; not as high as the May 2009-May 2010 average of 9.7%, but still representative of a significant number of unemployed Americans.  Yet, despite these statistics, employers report they are struggling to fill positions…not due to a lack of candidates, but due to a lack of jobseekers with “the right stuff”.  In a recent article, Sustainable Education: How to Train Students for 21st Century Careers of Impact, Roshan Paul, Amani Institute, reports that college graduates are not being equipped to compete in the 21st century workplace.  His research indicates
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DOL Addresses Challenges of Maturing Health Care Workforce

In January 2012, on behalf of the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP), the National Technical Assistance and Research (NTAR) Leadership Center convened a 1-day symposium “to explore issues relating to the aging health care workforce.” The Introduction to the post-meeting brief prepared by NTAR, states “The aging of the U.S. population has tremendous implications for the health care industry, both as employers of an older workforce and as providers of services to a growing number of older patients.”  The full In Brief article can be accessed at The Aging Workforce: Challenges for the Health Care
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VRAP: Helping Unemployed Veterans Join the Workforce

KRA Corporation feels that our Veterans are an important—and often unspoken—priority in public workforce policy today and second only to youth employment programming. Therefore we applaud the efforts of those agencies involved with the Veterans Retraining Assistance Program (VRAP). A joint program between the Department of Labor (DOL) and the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), the VRAP helps qualifying veterans receive crucial financial assistance for up to 12 months (payments equal the monthly full-time payment Montgomery GI Bill-Active Duty) so that they can pursue a degree or certificate for employment in high-demand occupations (as determined by the DOL). The VRAP has
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H.R. 798: A 21st Century Approach to the Workforce Development System

Reauthorization bill H.R. 798, or The Workforce Investment Act of 2013, was introduced by Representatives John Tierney (D-MA), Ruben Hinojosa (D-TX) and George Miller (D-CA) in mid-February. (Congress.gov offers a concise overview of this workforce development reauthorization.) Referred to the Subcommittee on Higher Education and Workforce Training in late April, this amendment to the Workforce Investment Act of 1998 (WIA) is an alternative to the Republican H.R. 803 Supporting Knowledge and Investing in Lifelong Skills (SKILLS) Act, which Democrats claim “is highly partisan and will have a grave impact on the workforce investment system.” With 49 co-sponsors, it is directed
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The Future of Workforce Development Rests in Washington D.C.

On March 15, 2013, H.R. 803, Supporting Knowledge and Investing in Lifelong Skills (SKILLS) Act, passed the U.S. House of Representatives by a vote of 215-202. According to a summary of the workforce development system bill provided by the House Republican Conference on the www.govtrack.us website “H.R. 803 seeks to provide American workers with a more dynamic flexible and effective network of job training services.” They go on to distill the policy into three main points: It eliminates ineffective and redundant programs It empowers job creators and promotes accountability It cuts through the bureaucracy Fleshing out those points, the bill
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Workforce Development and Job Creation Get Nod from President Obama in Baltimore

Baltimore’s workforce development initiatives were given a shot in the arm recently with the brief visit of President Barack Obama to the Charm City. Looking primarily to promote economic development through job creation, according to the White House, the purpose of the President’s second Jobs and Opportunity Tour is to address three areas of need: jobs, skills, and opportunity. As the operator of the Work Participation, Placement, and Support Services Program, a workforce development program for public-assistance recipients in Baltimore County, KRA Corporation applauds the President’s efforts in taking this opportunity to recognize the need to address job creation and
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