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MEDIA ADVISORY: HELP Committee Holds Hearing on WIOA and the Need to Substantially Expand Workforce Development Opportunities

WASHINGTON, June 11 – Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Chairman of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP), on Wednesday, June 12 at 10:00 a.m. ET, will lead the committee in a hearing titled, “The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act: Supporting Efforts to Meet the Needs of Youth, Workers, and Employers.”

In the United States today, youth unemployment rates remain twice as high as unemployment rates for the general population. Today, there are 4.6 million young adults between the ages of 16 and 24 who are out of school and unemployed. More than one-third of these young people live below the poverty line. Advancements in technology have also replaced too many job opportunities for workers. One estimate shows that current shifts toward automation could put 39 million Americans out of work by 2030. It is essential that investments are made to provide opportunities, training, education, and resources to strengthen and expand the U.S. workforce and economy.

First passed into law in 2014 with a bipartisan majority, the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) was established to expand high-quality employment opportunities for workers across the country through education, training, and support services. WIOA funds critical programs, including reentry services for formerly incarcerated people, migrant and farmworker workforce development programs, opportunities for youth, and training and placement services for dislocated workers.

The House passed a bipartisan WIOA reauthorization earlier this year.  

What: Senate HELP Committee Hearing titled, “The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act: Supporting Efforts to Meet the Needs of Youth, Workers, and Employers”
When: 10:00 a.m. ET, Wednesday, June 12
Where: Room 562, Dirksen Senate Office Building. This hearing will be livestreamed on the HELP Committee’s website.

  • Taylor White M.Ed, Partnership to Advance Youth Apprenticeship, Washington, DC
  • David Bradley PhD, Jobs for the Future, Washington, DC
  • Monty Sullivan PhD, Louisiana Community and Technical College System, Baton Rouge, LA
  • Lisa Bly-Jones PhD, Chicago Jobs Council (CJC), Chicago, IL

Matthew Dickerson, Mid South Extrusion, Monroe, LA