Workforce Investment Act

June 20, 2011 at 4:10 pm 2 comments

ALA outlines library priorities for reauthorization of the Workforce Investment Act

WASHINGTON, DC – The American Library Association (ALA) submitted comments to the leaders of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee on Friday, urging the committee to consider library priorities for the reauthorization of the Workforce Investment Act.

“Libraries play a critical role in providing access to workforce development activities and information related to training services and employment opportunities,” Emily Sheketoff, executive director of the ALA Washington Office, said.

“We asked the committee to recognize the work libraries are already doing to help the public get back to work and to include libraries in this bill so that they will have the resources and support they need to continue strengthening America’s workforce and helping people look for jobs.”

The ALA’s comments outline seven priorities for the reauthorization of the Workforce Investment Act. Foremost, the ALA asks the HELP Committee to ensure the bill makes public libraries are eligible for funds for employment and training activities and encourages workforce operators to partner with public libraries. The comments also ask the committee to include public libraries as part of state and local Workforce Development Boards and to emphasize the importance of adult digital literacy skills training.


Entry filed under: adult education, American Library Association.

Opportunity for All: How Library Policies and Practices Impact Public Internet Access (IMLS, June 2011). Visions for 21st Century Public Library

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Deborah Moorman  |  June 20, 2011 at 8:45 pm

    I just posted this to my facebook page. Maybe some my friends will be able to make a call and help get some action started.

  • 2. Holly Phillips  |  June 29, 2011 at 7:07 pm

    I think it makes perfect sense for public libraries to be considered and funded in workforce investment plans. So many times at my library, patrons have been referred by governement entities. Each agency, including the library, is doing the best it can with shrinking budgets and finite staff.

    The way things are, it seems that putting so much of our own resources- computers, internet access, and, perhaps most importantly, staff time- into helping people in their job serach is an unfunded mandate. We’re already doing the work, and it would help the whole community if we were given the resources to continue and improve on the services we provide.


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