Over the past year, the COVID-19 pandemic has caused regional unemployment claims to reach historic levels. Many in our community – Black, Indigenous, and other people of color, women, immigrants, individuals with disabilities, and workers with less access to education and lower incomes – have disproportionately suffered from the health and economic devastation caused by the public health crisis. The aftermath of this crisis calls for deliberate and bold changes to stabilize our workforce and ensure our region can successfully move forward.
Quality Jobs: Creating an Equitable Recovery
To that end, we are forming a regional effort, building a public/private coalition of businesses, community-based organizations, and public partners to advance an equitable economic recovery through a quality jobs initiative. Read a message from the region’s three workforce development boards. We hope you will join us as we rethink our collective investments to support working people and our local business community to expand equity for our region. We are seeking input and collaboration from stakeholders to develop this initiative, and we would like you to be part of these efforts. Contact Jesse Aronson, Worksystems’ WorkSource Services Manager, at jaronson@worksystems.org  to join in the discussions and formation of this initiative.
Quality Jobs: Learning from Others
As we and our partners in the Columbia-Willamette Workforce Collaborative explore what Quality Jobs could look like in our region, we are inspired by the work of cities and businesses across the country that are defining quality jobs and making them a reality. In Baltimore, Good Business Works is partnering with employers to promote respectful and inclusive workplaces. In San Diego, the Workforce Partnership is working with job seekers to determine what a quality job means to them. They are partnering with businesses and advocating at the legislature to make more quality jobs available. In Louisville, businesses like Norton Healthcare and Universal Woods are leading the creation of quality jobs by investing in the long-term success of their employees. In each of these cities, workforce boards, jobs seekers, and businesses are working together to define quality jobs. They are inspiring companies to succeed by investing in their employees and helping workers thrive. Click here for a synopsis of the programs mentioned above and links to additional resources.

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