SACRAMENTO – Assemblymembers Marie Waldron (R-Escondido) and Rudy Salas (D-Bakersfield) recently announced legislation to provide more career opportunities to students and underprivileged Californians as part of the bipartisan “Better Jobs for a Better California” package.
Assembly Bill 316 will fund innovative technical career training and employment programs, support organizations to help disadvantaged Californians break through barriers to success to find work, and fund nonprofit groups that help community college students graduate.
“Our goal is to help Californians with barriers to employment, such as English learners, those in poverty, previously incarcerated, or the disabled to get the education and experience they need for good-paying jobs,” said Waldron. “Our bill will provide help and training for those in poverty who need a way out and want to pursue careers that improve their lives.”
Assembly Bill 316 would fund grants to organizations that provide creative solutions to help people move up the workforce ladder.
“I am proud to work with my Republican colleagues to do something positive for California’s workforce,” said Salas. “AB 316 will create the Employment Revitalization fund to put people in high unemployment areas back to work. By investing in our communities through these grants, we will help uplift our workforce and grow California’s economy.”
The bill would also support organizations that help people with multiple barriers to employment get the education and work skills they need to find a career. Finally, it would increase funding for Regional Workforce Accelerator grants, focusing on a successful program that helps community college students achieve their educational goals.
“As the largest employer in District 75, Palomar Health recognizes that there is a need for a skilled workforce,” said Bob Hemker, president and & COE of Palomar Health. “Education and training opportunities are vital to building a strong skilled workforce, especially in the health care industry. Palomar Health appreciates Waldron and Salas for taking the lead in making these opportunities more accessible and is supportive of Assembly Bill 316.”
This bill is part of the “Better Jobs for a Better California” package that includes several bills with bipartisan support that seek to prepare Californians for the workforce and improve job opportunities. The package emphasizes providing resources to underserved communities, including women, minorities, veterans, and Native Americans.
In addition to the Waldron/Salas bill, the package includes proposals to develop a pre-apprenticeship program to recruit candidates from under-represented groups to firefighting careers, and create a permanent funding stream for K-12 career training programs and help apprentices enroll in academic courses related to their trades.