Executive order focuses on workforce development in response to COVID

WILMINGTON — Gov. John Carney on Monday signed an executive order that aims to get Delawareans back to work.

The initiative will provide assistance to individuals, as well as their families, who have lost jobs and income due to the COVID-19 crisis. The Department of Labor will partner with the Delaware Workforce Development Board to establish approved training and certification programs for unemployed and underemployed residents.

Training programs included in the rapid workforce development initiative will focus on in-demand occupations and skills currently sought in Delaware workplaces.

The workforce development program will initially be funded with $10 million of federal money.

“All Delawareans have made sacrifices during this COVID-19 crisis. Some have made more than others,” Gov. Carney said in a statement. “Delaware workers and their families across our state have lost jobs and income, but still have to pay their bills.

“We have a responsibility to support our neighbors who have been affected by this crisis. This new workforce development program will help provide workers with the skills they need to get back in the workforce quickly, earn a living and support their families.”

The certificate programs will not cost more than “the full amount of tuition charged by the non-degree credit certificate program” and will be available “on a first-come, first-served basis, based on individuals who meet the minimum educational level.”

Investments in workforce development were a recommendation of the Pandemic Resurgence Advisory Committee, which released its interim report Friday.

“The business community across Delaware has been engaged and supportive of this important workforce development program,” Gary Stockbridge, chairman of the Delaware Workforce Development Board, said in a statement. “We are ready to support its implementation and are ready to connect businesses in immediate need of skilled workers with individuals going through the training programs to ensure we get Delawareans back to work with good-paying jobs as quickly as possible.”

Helpful Coronavirus links

Delaware Division of Health Coronavirus Page
CDC: About the Coronavirus Disease 2019
CDC: What to do if You Are Sick
Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center
AP News Coronavirus Coverage
Reopening Delaware: Resources for Businesses
Delaware Phase 2 guidance

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