The Oregon Workforce Partnership (OWP), in partnership with the Oregon Department of Corrections, announced a $3.8 million grant award from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) to provide pre-and post-release job training services to help formerly incarcerated people secure employment upon release, thereby reducing recidivism.
OWP – of which Worksystems is a member — is a nonprofit workforce policy, funding, and coordinating organization comprised of over 200 community leaders from the public, private, nonprofit, government, and educational sectors in Oregon’s nine local workforce development areas. Oregon has an integrated one-stop service delivery model to provide a flexible, unified workforce development system branded as WorkSource Oregon (WSO). OWP members coordinate, oversee, and invest in the local WorkSource Oregon (WSO) centers – WSO is the state’s integrated, one-stop workforce development service delivery system — to ensure all Oregonians have access to the skills, training, and support necessary to obtain family-sustaining careers and support the talent needs of local industry.
The grant, which is part of the DOL’s Pathway Home 4 program, will be used to implement WorkSource Oregon Reentry services in all 12 prisons in Oregon.
“We are grateful to the DOL for this grant, which will help us make a real difference in the lives of people who are reentering the workforce after incarceration,” said Georgia Conrad, representing OWP. “This funding will allow us to provide comprehensive services that will help people find good-paying jobs immediately or shortly after release.”
The OWP’s WorkSource Oregon Reentry services will provide and leverage a range of services, including:
- Work preparation services like developing a resume, cover letter, and interview practice
- Training and education services
- Job search and placement assistance
- Financial literacy and budgeting classes
- Computer skills
The program will also provide case management services to help participants stay on track and achieve their goals
“We believe that everyone deserves a second chance,” said Heather Ficht, Executive Director of East Cascade Works. “This grant will help us give people who have been incarcerated the tools they need to succeed in the workforce and in their communities.”
The OWP will begin implementing WorkSource Oregon Reentry services in the fall of 2023. The program will be available to adults who are scheduled to be released from prison within 20 to 270 days.
For more information about the OWP’s WorkSource Oregon Reentry services, please visit oregonworkforcepartnership.org.