City approves $10 million ‘Workforce Development Recovery’ program to help local workers displaced by COVID-19

The Sacramento City Council on Tuesday approved a $10 million “Workforce Development Recovery” program designed to retrain and uptrain people who have lost their jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The program aims to support and partner with workforce development providers, community-based organizations and educational groups. It is funded by the $89 million the City received from the federal CARES Act.

“It is critical to support and uplift our workforce to address some of the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Councilmember Jay Schenirer. “Most importantly, we must also support our youth who need these foundations and quality workforce development options to succeed, which is why we have dedicated a minimum of 25 percent of the funds to workforce programs benefiting participants under age 24.”

The program has received extensive input and feedback from various workforce stakeholders and subject-matter experts, including neighborhood/community-based workforce development providers, members of the Mayor’s Workforce Collective, and members of the City’s Investment Committee: Workforce Working Group.

Equity and inclusion are cornerstones of this projects, organizers said, and City staff will prioritize neighborhoods and communities that have been disproportionately impacted by the COVID crisis.

“This is the first time the City has developed a workforce development program of this magnitude,” said Kriztina Palone, the City’s newly appointed Workforce Development Manager. “Given the significant job loss our region has experienced, prioritizing specific workforce services and activities is vital to the economic recovery of our unemployed, dislocated populations throughout Sacramento.”

This program will directly support workforce organizations and institutions in providing employment training and job placement services for Sacramento job seekers who have been displaced and unemployed due to the COVID-19 crisis. This includes access to employment resources, such as:

  • Upskilling and reskilling training opportunities in high-demand industries and occupations.
  • Direct job placement or internship opportunities.
  • Assistance with addressing employment barriers such as a lack of transportation, childcare, educational attainment or case management services.

The City has already received several proposals for workforce development programs and will be reviewing these along with others that may come forward through the required procurement process. Staff will return to City Council with specific workforce developments contracts in the coming weeks.

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