2014 Job Training
The Workplace, Inc., Bridgeport, CT
EPA Brownfields Program
In 2010, the EPA's Office of Brownfields and Land Revitalization (OBLR) led an effort to more closely collaborate with other programs within the Agency on workforce development and job training. Program offices now participating in the expanded initiative include the Office of Resource Conservation and Recovery (ORCR), Office of Superfund Remediation and Technology Innovation (OSRTI), Center for Program Analysis (CPA), Innovation, Partnerships, and Communication Office (IPCO), Office of Wastewater Management (OWM), Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention (OCSPP), and the Office of Emergency Management (OEM). This initiative was created to develop a job training cooperative agreement opportunity that includes expanded training in other environmental media outside the traditional scope of brownfields hazardous waste assessment and cleanup. As a result of this effort, the Environmental Workforce Development and Job Training program now allows applicants to deliver a broader array of training in the environmental field, in addition to the traditional brownfields hazardous waste and petroleum training historically provided. Through the expanded Environmental Workforce Development and Job Training program, graduates develop wider skill sets that improve their ability to secure full-time, sustainable employment in various aspects of hazardous and solid waste management and within the larger environmental field, including water quality improvement and chemical safety. This effort also gives communities more flexibility to provide different types of environmental training based on local employers' hiring needs.
Environmental Workforce Development and Job Training grant funds are provided to nonprofit organizations and other eligible entities to recruit, train, and place predominantly low-income and minority, unemployed and underemployed residents from solid and hazardous waste-impacted communities. To date, EPA has funded 237 job training grants totaling over $48 million through the former Brownfields Job Training program and Environmental Workforce Development and Job Training program. As of April 2014, approximately 12,800 individuals have completed training, and of those, approximately 9,100 have obtained employment in the environmental field, with an average starting hourly wage of $14.00. This equates to a cumulative placement rate of approximately 71% since the program was created in 1998.
Job Training Grant
EPA has selected The Workplace, Inc., for an Environmental Workforce Development and Job Training grant. The Workplace plans to train 55 students, place 48 graduates in environmental jobs, and track graduates for at least one year. The core training program includes 391 hours of instruction, including coursework in 40-hour HAZWOPER; CT asbestos supervisor; CT lead supervisor; OSHA 30-hour construction industry; lead renovation, repair, and painting; mold supervisor; HAZMAT; underground storage tank remediation; site sampling; wastewater management operator; RCRA; Building Performance Institute analyst; stormwater management; and bloodborne pathogens. Students completing the training will receive up to eight federal or state certifications. The Workplace is targeting unemployed and underemployed, low-income residents of Bridgeport's most impoverished neighborhoods, with a focus on recruiting veterans, women, and dislocated workers. Key partners include the Bridgeport Neighborhood Trust, Career Resources, the City of Bridgeport, the Connecticut Legislative Brownfields Taskforce, Bridgeport Regional Business Council, and a number of community-based organizations and environmental employers.
For further information, including specific grant contacts, additional grant information, brownfields news and events, and publications and links, visit the EPA Brownfields Web site (http://www.epa.gov/brownfields).
EPA Region 1 Brownfields Team
EPA Region 1 Brownfields Web site (http://www.epa.gov/region01/brownfields/)
Grant Recipient: The Workplace Inc., Bridgeport, Connecticut
The information presented in this fact sheet comes from the grant proposal; EPA cannot attest to the accuracy of this information. The cooperative agreement for the grant has not yet been negotiated. Therefore, activities described in this fact sheet are subject to change.