Harris County, TX (CW39) — TODAY, Commissioners Adrian Garcia and Rodney Ellis announced “Harris County Back to Work” – a workforce development program funded by the county to train 2,592 residents in skills such as IT, welding, construction, nursing, and other valuable trades. Prospective students can explore available programs by visiting HarrisCountyBackToWork.com or by calling (346) 867-8814.
“The pandemic has wrecked several sectors of the economy, directly impacting thousands in the service sector and so many are searching for new skills that translate to this new normal. Prior to the pandemic, I was focused on creating an effective workforce development program for Precinct 2 residents, since those with among the lowest median income reside in my precinct. However, since the beginning of the crisis, we in local government have focused on flattening the unemployment curve, and Harris County Back to Work is yet another way we are addressing that,” said Commissioner Adrian Garcia. “Despite social distancing, we in county government remain closest to the people we serve. Hardworking people need their elected officials to work hard for them in these difficult times, which is why I am extremely excited about the launch of this program.”
Approximately $2.4 million of CARES money was spent for the development and administration of Harris County Back to Work, and at a cost of $893 per person, the potential return on investment once students begin working in their new trades is immeasurable.
“Investments in programs like this are essential. People in our communities, many of whom rely on service industry jobs to take care of their families, continue to struggle to make ends meet as the COVID-19 pandemic rages on across the country,” said Commissioner Rodney Ellis. “High-quality jobs that provide a living wage are crucial for our communities to thrive and help us rebuild and support the local economy.”
Partner organizations were chosen for this program to ensure county-wide geographic availability of trainings. Those partner organizations include Alliance of Community Assistance Ministries (customer service, nursing, dental) Capital Idea (nursing, welding, construction), Goodwill (IT/coding, apartment maintenance, manufacturing/construction), Lone Star College (trucking, construction, plumbing, accounting, nursing, SER Jobs (customer service, construction, banking), WorkTexas (welding, electrical, construction, auto repair). Chicanos Por La Causa is the program administrator for Harris County Back to Work and has provided managerial support.
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To view a recording of the livestream of the event, please visit the Harris County Precinct 2 Facebook Page.