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Employment Connection Working To ‘Increase The Pipeline’ Of Minority Construction Workers

Published Tuesday, January 28, 2020
Employment Connection Working To ‘Increase The Pipeline’ Of Minority Construction Workers

(ST. LOUIS, MISSOURI) - Employment Connection is a non-profit St. Louis Community asset, helping to alleviate barriers to self-sufficiency for individuals with limited opportunities for more than 40 years. 

Founded in 1977, the Employment Connection provides valuable resources, training and support to inspire and empower individuals to change their circumstances, become employed, and attain independence.

Today, Employment Connection assists more than 1,800 individuals - annually.

The agency recently partnered with the St. Louis Carpenters Joint Apprenticeship Program and the City of St. Louis Department of Health to recruit residents form North City neighborhoods (Carr Square and Columbus Square) into a paid Carpentry/Soft-Skills Training Program.   

The St. Louis Carpenters Joint Apprenticeship Program delivered 80 hours of basic Construction Skills Training, which focused on skills fundamental to success in the field of carpentry.

The training program also introduced participants to: tools/ tool safety, measurements, construction mathematics, and general industry safety requirements.

Participants who completed the training also received U.S. Occupational Health and Safety (OSHA)-10, First Aid/ CPR, and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Lead Residential and Building Science Certifications and were assigned to work with Staff from the City of St. Louis Building Division in the stabilization of vacant properties.

Employment Connection provided Soft-Skills Training and access to other on-site services for their clients including: counseling, housing/utility assistance, transportation and carpentry tools and equipment.

Funding for the initiative was provided from The Byrne Criminal Justice Innovation (BCJI) Program.

Nine individuals completed the special program and quickly moved into the world of employment.

Employment Connection is now planning on two additional cohorts this year and will again focus its recruitment in North St. Louis.

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