Please refer back to the blog I posted on 10/5/2017, titled: “An open letter to President Trump,” before reading this blog, in order to gain some perspective on this whole situation. Thank you.
From a Nov 8, 2017 Press Release:
Barletta Saves Job Corps Program from Cuts.
WASHINGTON D.C. – Congressman Lou Barletta (R-PA), Co-Chair of the Job Corps Caucus, claimed victory in his fight to protect the Job Corps program from impending cuts by the Department of Labor (DOL). This week Barletta, along with Congressman Pete Sessions (R-TX) and Congressman Sanford D. Bishop Jr. (D-GA), led a bipartisan effort that produced a letter expressing concerns over a recently announced plan to reduce Job Corps student capacity to 33,532 total students in 2017. This amounted to a reduction of 4,662 training slots, despite the program receiving a one percent funding increase in the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2017. The letter garnered over 100 bipartisan signatures. Within hours of submitting the letter, Barletta’s office received word that the DOL would reverse the cuts. “Job Corps is one of the most important programs we have to encourage America’s young adults to succeed and learn the value of civic duty,” Barletta said. “I am very pleased the DOL now understands the importance of this program.” “When I was a mayor, I met the students from the Keystone Job Corps Center and witnessed the work they did for our community. They helped to build the sidewalks around City Hall and designed the trash receptacles during the downtown beautification project. I’ve also had numerous Job Corps students intern in my Hazleton district office. Job Corps allows young adults to get involved in our community, which benefits everyone. For 50 years the program has empowered the youth of America.” Barletta, the Republican Co-Chair of the Job Corps Caucus, said that the partnerships with local organizations and businesses have helped to foster a safe and secure environment, while benefitting both students and the community.
The Job Corps program was enacted as part of the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964 and most recently reauthorized in 2014 as part of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act. That bill contained provisions similar to Barletta’s H.R. 497, America Works Act to encourage states and localities to prioritize federal spending on education and training.
Job Corps is designed to provide young people with the skills necessary to obtain and hold jobs, enter the armed forces, or enroll in continuing education. The 124 Job Corps centers across the country serve more than 60,000 participants, who must be ages 16 to 24, low income, and facing barriers to employment and education.
“Thank you” to all of the members of Congress who came together to do the right thing here. Maybe this bipartisan cooperation will start a new trend? I’m hopeful, but I don’t think I’ll hold my breath either.
Photo: Barletta met with Red Rock Job Corps Center students in October.