The Hispanic Worker Initiative is a strategic effort to prepare Hispanic youth and workers for career opportunities in the 21st century economy. On October 12, 2001, President George W. Bush established a Presidential Advisory Commission to develop an action plan for achieving educational excellence for Hispanic Americans. Simultaneously, Secretary of Labor Elaine L. Chao and Assistant Secretary Emily Stover DeRocco began to examine workforce issues and challenges faced by Hispanics and identified challenges where the Department has an integral role in bringing forward innovative solutions. The Department developed the following strategies aimed at helping Hispanic Americans find and prepare for good jobs at good wages:
- Help Hispanic Americans develop language and occupational skills
- Help Hispanic American youth stay on an educational path that leads to rewarding careers
- Encourage collaboration between employers, community colleges and the public workforce system to help Hispanic Americans build the skills required in growing industries
A top priority for the Department of Labor's Employment and Training Administration is implementing the Hispanic Worker Initiative. The Department recognizes that Hispanic Americans need a vast array of services to assist them in obtaining employment opportunities and advancing in emerging careers in order to succeed in the 21st century economy. For that reason, the Department is investing approximately $10 million to pursue the above mentioned strategies through a variety of partnerships to help Hispanic Americans better prepare for good jobs at good wages.
Currently, ETA is funding several unique, innovative, and industry-driven demonstration projects directed to Hispanics. Each demonstration project addresses one or more of the identified workforce challenges Hispanic Americans face. Combined, these projects create innovative solutions addressing the workforce challenges of Hispanics.
ETA will continue to explore more innovative projects throughout the year and fund more new national models that address the identified workforce challenges of Hispanic Americans.