Invest In Skills NY Workforce Strategy Group Lays Out Next Steps to Get New Yorkers Back to Work

Invest in Skills NY shares forward-thinking actions for an equitable recovery

Albany, New York, September 28, 2020–The NYS Workforce Strategy Group, a group convened by Invest in Skills NY(ISNY), today released a range of policy, funding, and programmatic recommendations to address persistent labor market issues that were exacerbated by Covid-19. The report, A New Way Forward: Bold Actions to Reshape New York’s Labor Market, compiles immediate, short-term, and long-term actions for Governor Andrew Cuomo and state policymakers to stabilize the economy and workers; to get more New Yorkers trained for the jobs of today and tomorrow; and to rebuild, rethink and reform that state’s workforce and training systems.

ISNY’s recommendations follow their “Accounting for Success: A Blueprint for Measuring the Performance of New York State’s Workforce Development System” report, which aims to guide policymakers in the development of a statewide, 21st century data system for workforce development. “A 21st-century workforce development strategy must be able to answer basic questions on the performance of the system to ensure that we are effectively connecting labor supply with labor demand,” said Marjorie Parker, President, and CEO of JobsFirstNYC, a co-chair organization of Invest In Skills NY.

“This crisis has afforded New York a real shot, and an imperative, to be deliberate about how we rebuild our labor market and workforce,” said Melinda Mack, co-chair of ISNY and executive director of New York Association of Training and Employment Professionals. “Tapping into New York’s leading experts, the NYS Workforce Strategy Group has laid out pragmatic, actionable and achievable steps that will ultimately help New Yorkers get back on their feet and access better jobs. ”

The recommendations focus on:

●  Getting New Yorkers back to work by stabilizing small businesses, the working poor and
eliminating barriers to employment

●  Using existing federal and state funding, state authority and increased coordination to expand
opportunity for all New Yorkers

●  Rebuilding local and regional labor markets with an emphasis on quality job growth

●  Deepening the coordination between economic and workforce development

The NYS Workforce Strategy Group included representatives from business intermediaries, leading workforce providers, and advocates all with the common goal of supporting an equitable economic recovery and getting New Yorkers back to work.

“CEO works across the state helping formerly incarcerated New Yorkers, who have been particularly impacted by the pandemic, connect to work,” said Jessica Centeno, DeputyExecutive Director, Center for Employment Opportunities. “With high unemployment across the state, we have to do everything we can to be sure these workers, and many more who struggled prior to COVID-19 to get a job, do not get left behind.”

“As we have seen in Brooklyn, small businesses are the heart and soul of our local communities, and they employ around half of the workers in our state,” said Randy Peers, President and CEO, Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce.“They are part of the workforce solution, and are vital to our regional economic recovery.”

“We have seen the power of aligning economic and workforce development strategies at Northland,” shared Stephen Tucker, President and CEO, Northland Workforce Training Center. “We work every day to increase coordination, address policies that disadvantage our students, and expand the opportunity to ensure all New Yorkers have a chance to thrive. New York has the chance to apply this unique model across many sectors of our economy, and replicate this strategy throughout the State.”

About Invest in Skills NY

Invest in Skills NY is a statewide coalition that understands the economic imperative of investing in a skilled workforce for New York State. Led by New York Association of Training & Employment Professionals and JobsFirstNYC, the statewide coalition aims to make workforce development an economic priority and achieve policy change that streamlines the workforce development system through significant sustained state and local investment.

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