Funding Awarded for Re-entry Pathways for Incarcerated

$500,000 to connect current and formally incarcerated with work opportunity and access

Seattle, Wash.The Workforce Development Council (WDC) of Seattle-King County, is honored to accept an award of $500,000 from the US Department of Labor Employment and Training Administration to support employment opportunity access for persons having been involved in the criminal justice system throughout Seattle-King County. The WDC is one of ten recipients nationwide in an effort to improve re-entry outcomes for community members returning home from confinement. 

Secretary of Labor, Tom Perez commented regarding the grant’s announcement: “Why wait for inmates to be released before giving them support they need to re-enter the workforce? (I’m) proud to live in a nation of second chances.”

This Workforce Integration Project will establish a One-Stop American Job Center site, known locally as WorkSource, in the Maleng Regional Justice Center in Kent which is a part of the King County Department of Adult and Juvenile Detention. Partnerships with the Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle, King County, and South Seattle College will make this great work possible. The project will establish a coordinated system of re-entry pathways designed to help persons reconnect to employment and education opportunities, as well as access the wrap-around services needed to be successful community members and reduce their involvement in the criminal justice system.

Executive Dow Constantine comments: “King County is committed to reducing recidivism and creating employment pathways for people who need a second chance. As part of our commitment to equity and social justice, we support the progressive efforts of local organizations and justice leaders as they foster the potential of all people and build stronger, safer communities.”

“This partnership will build upon our region’s robust employment system,” says Marléna Sessions, Chief Executive Officer of the Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County. “With this project, we hope to lead systemic change efforts in serving adults who face barriers to employment and self-sufficiency after incarceration.”

“This support from the Department of Labor will allow us to advance our mission of making sure past offenders have the tools, education and support to find good jobs as they transition back into their communities,” South Seattle College President Gary Oertli said.  “We look forward to working closely with our partners in providing these citizens with the opportunities they deserve to achieve stability and success.”

Pamela Banks, CEO of the Urban League, remarks: “This grant in partnership with the Workforce Development Council and partners furthers the Urban League’s mission of empowering communities to thrive by securing educational and economic opportunities. We are honored to engage in this work of supporting our residents’ self-sufficiency upon returning to their community and families.” 

Media Contact
Hannah Mello, Communications Program Manager
Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County
hmello@seakingwdc.org  | (206) 448-0474

Job and Resource Fair Saturday at Rainier Community Center

Seattle-King County Resource Day and Job Fair to Connect Jobseekers with Opportunities

Seattle, Wash.Local job seekers are invited to meet employers and resource providers while networking with fellow jobseekers at the upcoming Seattle-King County Resource Day and Job Fair this Saturday, August 27 at 10:00am-2:00pm at the Rainier Community Center (4600 38th Ave, South, Seattle).

The Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County and WorkSource Seattle-King County, in partnership with Seattle Housing Authority and King County Housing Authority, are excited to announce their largest job and resource fair to date, with nearly 1000 expected attendees.  

With over 35 employers and 70 resource providers participating, this one-day event combines job opportunities, one-on-one coaching, and other community services to King County residents. Employers, such as Sysco Seattle, CBRE, ResCare Homecare, Wells Fargo, and many others in construction, hospitality, healthcare, retail, and municipalities, will be present and ready to hire. 
Other community-wide services include: free back-to-school backpacks, credit and debt counseling, education and employment resources, financial planning, access to public benefits, credit reports, housing and homeownership counseling, legal assistance on bankruptcy and consumer rights, help with FAFSA applications, Veteran services, advice on building a growing a business and access to health care, childcare, and transportation.

“This Seattle-King County Resource Day provides job seekers with career opportunities and resources all in one place,” says Marléna Sessions, Chief Executive Officer of the Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County. “We are thrilled to partner with the King County and Seattle Housing Authorities on this event, connecting local businesses with high quality talent.”

“Our partnership with the Workforce Development Council enables us to offer valuable employment opportunities and supportive resources for our tenants to improve their career or living situations,” says Andrew Lofton, Executive Director of Seattle Housing Authority.  

“We’re proud to co-host this event, helping our community to prosper and take advantage of the growing economy,” says Executive Director Stephen Norman of the King County Housing Authority.

Please contact Sharon Afforde at safforde@esd.wa.gov for more information. Jobseekers can RSVP on Eventbrite or email for assistance with registration.

Media Contact
Hannah Mello, Communications Program Manager
Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County
hmello@seakingwdc.org  | (206) 448-0474

Regional Efforts Bring New Opportunities to Veterans

Fourth Annual Boots2Work Career Fair at the Tacoma Dome

Seattle, Wash.- Join the Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County (WDC), Workforce Central, employers, and job seekers for the Boots2Work Career Fair on June 21, 2016 at 9:00am-12:00pm at the Tacoma Dome (2727 East “D” Street, Tacoma, WA 98421).

The WDC, in partnership with Workforce Central, is excited to announce its largest anticipated Boots2Work Career Fair to date.

With 90 employers participating, this event is the part of a concerted effort on the part of local workforce development boards to implement cross-regional strategies that get veterans back to work and on a career path. Resources will include employer connections, resume assistance, interview help, and access to other WorkSource resources provided in King and Pierce Counties.

“Boots2Work is a wonderful example of what is possible when we collaborate to support our veterans,” says Marléna Sessions, chief executive officer of the Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County and board member of the National Association for Veteran Services Organizations (NAVSO). “Our partnership with Workforce Central has created the opportunity to support our veterans with access to high quality jobs, and connect our local businesses with high quality talent.”

“This strategic partnership between Pierce and King Counties allows us to create even more employment opportunities for our transitioning military service members, veterans, and their families,” says Linda Nguyen, chief executive officer of Workforce Central. “Boots2Work is pivotal in facilitating the connection between our regional talent and available high wage careers.”

Please contact Andrew Ang at AAng@ESD.WA.gov for more information. Job seekers can RSVP on Eventbrite or email Mr. Ang for assistance with registration. Though veterans are especially encouraged to attend, this event welcomes all job seekers.

The Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County is a workforce grant-making organization that oversees employment-related programs for youth, the adult workforce and employers in King County, with the goal of a strong economy and self-sufficiency for every resident.

Media Contact

Danielle Wallace, Project Manager
Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County
dwallace@seakingwdc.org
206-448-0474

Aerospace Workforce Projections Released for King County

Seattle, Wash. – The Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County (WDC) released today its comprehensive, industry-focused Aerospace Talent Pipeline Study. This study represents an analysis for the most current available labor market data, and is designed to be useful for all consumers, particularly aerospace industry members, jobseekers, and educators interested in career options for their students.

Talent Pipeline Studies focus on growing local sectors and serve as occupational supply and demand analyses of the local labor market. This WDC research identifies potential gaps that may persist without changes in workforce preparation efforts and supports the industry-driven design of the Seattle-King County workforce system.

Replacement openings will significantly impact the sector in coming years; over 50 percent of the aerospace workforce is over the age of 45. The sector has begun significant efforts to recruit and train workers locally at the K-12 level, however this does not address the need for engineers at the four year and higher levels.

“This data goes beyond providing information to jobseekers, to providing a meaningful tool that can inform decisions of those seeking long-term, living-wage jobs in King County,” says Marléna Sessions, chief executive officer of the Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County. “By making this data more accessible, we hope to empower job seekers to target their career plans towards the most in-demand careers.”

For more about the WDC's talent pipeline studies visit www.seakingwdc.org/talent-pipeline. More about the Workforce Development Council and its workforce initiatives can be found at www.seakingwdc.org or by calling (206) 448-0474.

The Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County is a workforce grant-making organization that oversees employment-related programs for youth, the adult workforce and employers in King County, with the goal of a strong economy and self-sufficiency for every resident.

Media Contact
Danielle Wallace, Project Manager
Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County
dwallace@seakingwdc.org
206-448-0474 x 3002

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2016-2020 Seattle-King County Workforce Development Plan Released for Public Comment

The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (the Opportunity Act) was signed by President Obama on July 22, 2014 after passing Congress with broad bipartisan support. The Opportunity Act reauthorizes and amends the Workforce Investment Act (1998) through important workforce system reforms.

The Opportunity Act empowers local areas and private sector-led workforce boards with the responsibility of developing a strategic, integrated plan that supports economic growth and labor force needs intended to grow the capacity and performance of the workforce system. Local Workforce Development Boards are required to develop a four-year plan that describes the strategies, programs, and activities they will carry out to implement the Opportunity Act.

The WDC has developed an action plan for Program Years 2016-2020 based on considerations of local workforce needs and thoughtful contributions from partners and stakeholders. The goals and objectives identified entail collaboration across the full span of the workforce development system and utilize the breadth of the system’s assets and expertise.

After many months of planning and community engagement, we are proud to present to you the 2016-2020 Seattle-King County Workforce Development Plan. The WDC welcomes comments and input. Per the guidelines, the plan will be available for public comment until noon on May 31, 2016.

Please click here to view the plan.

Please email comments or questions with your contact information to operations@seakingwdc.org by the May 31, 2016 deadline.