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< Back to current issue of Immigration Daily < Back to current issue of Immigrant's Weekly

 

 

Employment and Training Administration

 

Media Contact:                        David Stewart           For Immediate Release

Telephone:                            (202)219-6871           Wednesday, July 18, 2000

 

$29.1 MILLION IN GRANTS WILL TRAIN U.S. WORKERS FOR HIGH-TECH JOBS OFTEN FILLED BY FOREIGN WORKERS

 

The U.S. Department of Labor today announced the second of three rounds of demonstration grants for training American workers for high-skill jobs in areas where companies are facing labor shortages.  This $29 million round is part of nearly $80 million the Labor Department will invest this year in fees received through the H1-B visa program that allows companies to hire temporary foreign workers.

 

“High-tech businesses are in desperate need of high skilled workers,” President Clinton said.  “We are committed to business and our workers.  With these grants, we can help companies meet their labor needs by training U.S. workers for these high-tech, high-skill jobs.” 

 

The funds will enable American workers to receive high-tech training in such targeted occupations as network design, digital media, systems analyst, telecommunications, programming, nursing, bioscience, and animation.

 

“We have to address the fact that we don’t have a worker shortage but a skills shortage in this country,” Secretary of Labor Alexis M. Herman said.  “These grants can help ensure that American workers have the first opportunity for these high-paying jobs.  This program helps incumbent workers, dislocated workers and those new to the labor force.”

 

According to Assistant Secretary of Labor Raymond Bramucci, the Labor Department to-date has committed more than $41 million for training under the H1-B initiative.  In several weeks, the Department’s Employment and Training Administration will begin a third round of competition for these high-tech training grants.

 


-2-

 

 

 

The H1-B grants build on current Labor Department initiatives that address high-tech skill shortages, including:

 

.    June 2000: $10.2 million to establish or strengthen regional partnerships aimed at meeting employers’ identified skill shortages.

 

.    March 2000: $15.2 million for regional skills consortium building.

 

.    June 1999: $9.57 million to train dislocated workers in computer and electronics manufacturing, machinery and motor vehicles, chemicals and petroleum, specialized instruments and biomedics.

 

·                   June 1998: $7.5 million to 11 organizations to train dislocated workers in information technology skills.

 

The grants announced today will serve approximately 5,000 workers.  Their funding comes from a portion of the $500 fee companies pay for each H1-B non-immigrant visa for which they apply under 1998's American Competitiveness and Workforce Improvement Act.

 

 

# # #

This information will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request.  Voice phone: (202) 219-5577.  TDD message phone: 1-800-326-2577.



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