Magazine article Nation's Cities Weekly

Labor Grants Target Migrant Workers, Retraining, Jobs for Youth

Magazine article Nation's Cities Weekly

Labor Grants Target Migrant Workers, Retraining, Jobs for Youth

Article excerpt

The Department of Labor just awarded more than $200 million in funds to three new grant programs. The funding will address the needs of migrant farm workers' children, labor shortages and unemployment among youths (see related article).

The first program is directed to the children of some of the neediest families in America--migrant farm workers. These children will get special attention, training, and mentoring through 10 programs funded by $10 million in grants from the U.S. Department of Labor. The goal of this project is to help young people build the foundation for a better life than that of their parents who follow the harvest seasons from field to field as their parents had to.

NLC supports programs designed to motivate disadvantaged students to stay in school or to provide for those who cannot function within the school environment and support federal/state/local partnership efforts to meet the educational needs of special groups -- the poor, minorities and children with disabilities.

"Young people who travel with their families to work the harvest often miss out on school and other experiences that lead to higher education and a good job," Vice President Al Gore said. "These programs will help migrant children reach their potential and their parents realize their dreams of a better life for their children."

Secretary of Labor Alexis Herman said the 10 organizations (Florida Department of Education in Tampa, and the Arkansas Human Development Corp. in Little Rock, Ark.) will receive grants ranging form $200,000 to $2,718,000. "These grants will help break the cycle of poverty for many families," she said.

The U.S. Department of Labor also awarded $223 million in grants to 36 communities to attack unemployment among out-of-school youth. These grant monies represent the largest investment of its kind for the Department of Labor, and the first installment of a five-year, $1.375 billion effort to provide education and job training opportunities to young people who are most at-risk of permanent joblessness.

NLC policy supports programs that prepare and aid individuals to adapt to a continually changing job market. …

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