February 12, 2024

REMINDER: Tell U.S. Senators To Rework Jobs Program Legislation So It Works Better For Employees

U.S. lawmakers are working on a bill that would reauthorize the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). While this legislation is essential for workforce development, according to the National Skills Coalition (NSC) it does not go far enough in modernizing how employees access funding for training, in expanding integration of digital skills, or in codifying programs for sector partnerships.

That is why the NSC is asking business owners and employees alike to call their U.S. senators to ask that they make sure their version of WIOA reauthorization:

  • Invests in high-quality skills training, economic supports, and learning pathways to quality jobs;
  • Guarantees high-quality skills training for qualifying workers through new Skills Training Grants;
  • Create a new 21st Century Sector Partnerships Grant Program to develop a national network of high-performing industry/sector partnerships and implement career pathways that advance workforce equity and job quality;
  • Strengthen the delivery of equity-advancing career services to better meet the needs of working people and people of color, in particular;
  • Provide accountability that ensures the U.S. workforce system contributes to an inclusive economy; and
  • Provides Digital Skills at Work grants and expand integrated education and training programs that build digital, literacy, numeracy, and language skills in the context of occupational education or training.

The NSC said these changes will provide the biggest impact for small businesses, women, people of color, individuals without education beyond high school, people who work in industries devastated by the pandemic, and other employees who traditionally face structural barriers in accessing and benefiting from the public workforce system.

The next WIOA reauthorization will govern the U.S. workforce and adult education system for the next decade, so it crucial that federal lawmakers get reauthorization right. Click here to make your voice heard.

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