Press Releases

House Passes DelBene Amendment Boosting Apprenticeship Programs for Workers

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Washington, DC, June 23, 2017 | comments

Congresswoman Suzan DelBene (WA-01) today welcomed House passage of her amendment, included in the Accelerating Individuals into the Workforce Act (H.R. 2842), which helps people find good-paying jobs in high-demand industries through apprenticeships.

“Helping people find long-term employment in a high-demand industry is one of the best ways to ensure everyone has economic security. As technological advancements like automation change the way our economy works, apprenticeships and on-the-job training are an increasingly important part of that equation,” DelBene said. “We need a national commitment to addressing the skills gap through federal policies that promote apprenticeships and meet the needs of our evolving workforce. It’s important to remember that these smart investments not only have an incredible effect on our economy, but also on people’s lives by ensuring they become self-sufficient through specialized training and skills needed to increase their earning potential.”

Video of DelBene speaking on the House floor can be found HERE.

Last week, the House Ways and Means Committee marked up Rep. Carlos Curbelo’s (R-FL) Accelerating Individuals into the Workforce Act, which directs $100 million in the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program to support workforce development pilot projects for TANF recipients. DelBene successfully added an amendment that requires at least one of the projects funded under the bill be an apprenticeship program — ensuring low-income TANF recipients can reap the benefits afforded by apprenticeships.

According to Washington state’s Workforce Training and Education Coordinating Board, publicly funded apprenticeships in Washington provide the best return on taxpayer investment of any job-training program. For every $1 invested in apprenticeships, there is a $23 return.

DelBene has long been an advocate for evidence-based workforce development programs, securing $200 million to expand job-training opportunities for those on nutrition assistance, including $22 million for Washington. She also supported the expansion of the Department of Labor Apprenticeship USA State Expansion Grant to boost apprenticeships.

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