Gov. Charlie Baker took to the phone today to discuss the state’s recent actions regarding unemployment benefits. The governor is urging businesses to comply with federal law and said that the state is merely documenting recipients of relief dollars. This approach does not constitute a “clawback.” However, a caller asked if the state is trying to skirt the law by refusing to give benefits to small businesses.
A new partnership is partnering the Immigrants’ Assistance Center in New Bedford with MassHire’s GreaterNew Bedford CareerCenter to provide virtual services to immigrant workers. The new program, Citizenship and Workforce Readiness, is intended to help new citizens gain job-based computer skills and increase their economic mobility. The center will serve as a satellite location for MassHire Greater New Bedford.
Through this collaborative effort, MassHire Greater New Bedford is developing virtual services and computer-based job training for young people, including citizenship testing. The IAC’s multilingual team will guide individuals through the process and help them meet the requirements. A new computer classroom is scheduled to open in July and will allow students to practice taking naturalization exams online. This technology is particularly important as U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has plans to use tablets for naturalization tests.
A grant to MassHire Greater New Bedford Career Center will allow the center to provide in-person services for people interested in pursuing career development. The program will help individuals prepare for the employment market by providing them with training and advising services. Students will have access to a comprehensive database of jobs, which includes an online job search tool. MassHire JobQuest is also available online, and users can search for jobs by keyword, geography, or title.
To meet the demands of the 2020 workforce, the MassHire Greater New Bedford Career Center will offer in-person and virtual job fairs. Jibrael Younis, the supervisor of the Business Engagement Solutions Team, helped the Central Region Career Center make the switch to virtual job fairs and job seeker outreach. Jibrael used his technical skills and creativity to make the transition from in-person employer services to virtual services.
The Career Center will work closely with employers to ensure the programs meet the needs of the workforce. The program will offer CNA and pharmacy technician training programs to 46 adults, including recent immigrants. The program will also include wrap-around services. It will collaborate with MassHire, area organizations, and employers to ensure the best possible outcomes for the program participants. In addition, the center will assess the trainee’s education and experience by using tools such as Work Keys and the Test for Adult Basic Education (TABE).
In addition to a career fair, the PACE Child Care Works organization is a full-service childcare resource and referral program. In addition, PACE Child Care Works also has an evidence-based early literacy, parenting, and school readiness program. As part of the initiative, the SouthCoast Chamber is also sponsoring the SouthCoast Job Fair 2022 on March 4th at White’s of Westport. At the job fair, over 100 employers will showcase their open positions.