News Releases

Senator Murray Includes Over $55 Million for Unemployed Washington State Workers to Access Job Training Resources in Economic Recovery Bill

Jan 29 2009

As record layoffs hit families across Washington state, funding will help boost state services to get unemployed workers back on the job

(Washington, D.C.) – Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), Chairman of the Senate HELP Employment and Workplace Safety Subcommittee, announced that she has worked to include over $55 million in critical job training funding for unemployed Washington state residents in the Senate American Economic Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. The funding will allow laid-off Washington state workers to access improved job placement and training resources in their region.

“Through no fault of their own, Washingtonians across our state are finding themselves without a job and without the skills to find a new one.  But with training and job-search services, they can begin to get back on their feet.  These dollars will go directly to Washington state to help laid-off workers find new jobs and get the training and career counseling they need to succeed long-term,” Senator Murray said.  “This economic recovery package is about getting people back to work and getting our nation back on track.  The fastest and most effective way we can do that is by directly investing in our greatest resource – America’s workers.”

"I want to thank Senator Murray for her diligent efforts to bring needed resources to bare on the worker dislocation and unemployment situation going on across the country,” said Eleni Papadakis, Executive Director, Washington State Workforce Training and Education Coordinating Board. “She has consistently lead the rallying cry for supporting our citizens, especially our dislocated workers, disadvantaged adults and youth. In Washington, we've seen the largest unemployment numbers in our history at a time when the resources to serve them are at their lowest.”

The funding in this bill will go to the State of Washington which will then distribute that funding among the state’s 12 workforce development areas. Unemployed workers would be able to access the assistance that this funding helps provide by contacting their local WorkSource affiliate. WorkSource affiliates provide job seekers and employers with career assessment, job matching, interview and resume writing instruction, skill building, and job placement help.

To find your local WorkSource affiliate visit Senator Murray’s One-Stop Economic Resource Center and click on WorkSource career center.

Senator Murray has led efforts in the Senate to increasWorkSource career cente job training investments in the Economic Recovery package. Two weeks ago, she introduced three bills designed to help unemployed workers and youth get the training and experience they need to find new jobs in strong or emerging fields like “green” technology and health care.

Details on the workforce training funding Senator Murray helped to include in the Economic Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009:

  • Workforce Investment Act Funds: $3.25 billion nationwide, $46,908,707 for Washington state for employment and skills-training services for dislocated workers, adults, and youth. 
  • Employment Services Grants: $400 million nationwide, $8,382,651 for Washington state to help unemployed individuals find new jobs through state employment service agencies, including $250 million for states to provide reemployment services.