U.S. Department of Labor Awards More than $131 Million in Dislocated Worker Grants in Response to Coronavirus Public Health Emergency
WASHINGTON, DC – The U.S. Department of Labor today announced the award of the first installment of 26 Dislocated Worker Grants (DWGs) totaling $131,384,557 to help address the workforce-related impacts of the coronavirus public health emergency. These awards are funded under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which provided $345 million for DWGs to prevent, prepare for and respond to coronavirus.
“Americans across the country are making sacrifices to combat the spread of coronavirus,” said Secretary of Labor Eugene Scalia. “The Dislocated Worker Grants awarded today will help some of these unemployed Americans find new jobs performing work that responds to the impact of the virus on their communities.”
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services declared the coronavirus a nationwide public health emergency on Jan. 31, 2020. The Federal Emergency Management Agency also issued coronavirus emergency declarations for states, outlying areas and Indian tribal governments on March 13, 2020. These federal declarations enable the Secretary of Labor to award Disaster Recovery DWGs to help address the workforce-related impacts of this public health emergency.
DWGs may provide eligible participants disaster-relief employment to address the coronavirus’ impacts within their communities, as well as employment and training activities. In addition to these Disaster Recovery DWGs, states and other eligible entities may also apply for Employment Recovery DWGs to provide reemployment services to eligible individuals affected by mass layoffs, such as those resulting from the coronavirus pandemic.
The purpose of these disaster DWGs is to create temporary jobs for eligible individuals to assist with clean-up, recovery and humanitarian efforts in areas impacted by disasters or emergency situations as outlined in WIOA Section 170(d)(4). In the case of the coronavirus public health emergency, funding could be used for humanitarian assistance, clean-up and mitigation associated with the virus, and job training for industries still hiring during the health emergency.
Twenty-four states and territories will receive award funding. They include Alabama, California, Colorado, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, the District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Guam, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oregon, the Republic of Palau, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Texas, Virginia and Wyoming.
Supported by the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act of 2014, Dislocated Worker Grants temporarily expand the service capacity of dislocated worker training and employment programs at the state and local levels by providing funding assistance in response to large, unexpected economic events that cause significant job losses.
For further information about COVID-19, please visit the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The mission of the Department of Labor is to foster, promote and develop the welfare of the wage earners, job seekers and retirees of the United States; improve working conditions; advance opportunities for profitable employment; and assure work-related benefits and rights.