President Obama Signs Training-Focused Jobs Bill


President Obama signed a bill into law last Tuesday to help streamline and improve an antiquated job training infrastructure. The bill, called the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act was created to address the issue of a skills gap being experienced by many companies, despite a trend of overall job growth. 

The bill received support from both Democrats and Replubicans, which Mr. Obama noted at the signing ceremony: “Folks in Congress got past their differences; they got a bill to my desk,” he said. “So this is not a win for Democrats or Republicans; it is a win for American workers.” 

The federal job training infrastructure has long been a source of frustration for workers, who often note the system is dysfunctional and ineffective. According to Holly Johnson of City Town Info, the quality and efficacy of the program may have degraded over time because its success was measured by how many people signed up, not by outcomes.

 According to The New York Times, the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act was created to eliminate duplicate programs and control waste by adding new systems of accountability and offering specific tools to job seekers, helping them find appropriate work opportunities.

Sources:
“Congress And Biden Aim For Job Training That Actually Leads To Jobs,” npr.org, July 23, 2014, Tamara Keith, http://www.npr.org/2014/07/23/334091696/congress-and-biden-aim-for-job-training-that-actually-leads-to-jobs
“Obama Signs New Job-Training Law,” nytimes.com, July 22, 2014, David S. Joachim, http://www.nytimes.com/2014/07/23/us/obama-signs-new-job-training-law.html
“The First Significant Legislative Reform of Our Job-Training System in a Number of Years,” whitehouse.gov, July 22, 2014, David Hudson, http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2014/07/22/preparing-americans-jobs-future

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