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Pierce County’s WorkForce Central receives $6 million grant to assist the homeless and unemployed

Post by C.R. Roberts / The News Tribune on June 22, 2012 at 2:38 pm |
June 22, 2012 2:38 pm

WorkForce Central has received a $6 million grant to assist homeless families and unemployed workers The grant is administered by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Workforce Innovation Fund, and provides housing assistance, pays for training and offers employment counseling.

Linda Nguyen, WorkForce Central CEO, said in a statement Friday that with unemployment in Pierce County so high, the grant provides “a critical boost to our efforts to put unemployed and underemployed workers back to work and help employers find skilled workers for in-demand fields.”

WorkForce Central will partner with workforce boards in Skagit, Whatcom and Yakima counties beginning in the fall to launch a 40-month employment program. The hope, according to the statement, is “to simplify and integrate the fragmented social service systems that help the unemployed and the homeless.”

The goal is to create an overall program that “combines social services, housing and workforce support to create a one-stop shop for homeless families, unemployed workers and others.”

The grant will allow the agency and its partners to serve 400 participants over three years. The funds will be used for education, job-skill training, housing, transportation and placement.

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