WASHINGTON, DC (September 23, 2020) – The Utility Workers Union of America’s (UWUA) Power for America Training Trust Fund (P4A) today announced it is the recipient of a $200,000 Lumina Foundation grant to help servicemembers successfully transition into post-military careers. The funding will help around 100 service members and veterans – particularly men and women of color – to apply the skills and credentials they gained in the military toward continued education and employment as civilians.
“The utility sector has a lot to offer veterans and servicemembers, including a supportive, team environment and a mission-driven ethos to serve communities,” said Utility Workers Union of America President James Slevin. “This important grant funding will help more individuals take full take advantage of the skills they learned in the military and smoothly launch them into high-wage, family-supporting careers.”
P4A is one of four programs supporting the foundation’s Military Credentialing Advancement Initiative (MCAI) to identify obstacles servicemembers face entering the civilian workforce. Statistics show around 70% of the roughly 200,000 veterans who enter the civilian workforce each year, must retrain, requalify or start over in education.
This is especially true for servicemembers of color – who make up around 43% of the active-duty force – but who disproportionately cluster into low-skilled, low-wage jobs such as food service, supply administration and warehousing and equipment handling after their military service. The MCAI Grant looks to advance those Military Occupational Standards, Navy Rates and Air Force Specialty Codes targeted by the grant for positive outcomes and deliverables in these recognized areas.
“We’re pleased to participate in this grant program which is key to building stackable, transparent credentials that lead to strong employment outcomes,” said Jonathan Harmon, P4A executive director. “We are proud and excited to embark on this new program and to support military communities.”
This grant will help P4A replicate the success of its gas sector training-to-placement program – that’s benefitted over 700 veterans since 2012 – expanding into a new electric sector training-to-placement program. P4A also has plans to replicate this model for the water sector. Individuals who participate in the program will be hired by one of P4A’s company partners upon completion of the program.
Chartered in 1945, the Utility Workers Union of America (UWUA), AFL-CIO represents around 50,000 active members employed in America’s utility sectors including the electric, gas, water, and related professional and service industries. James Slevin is the UWUA’s National President. For more information visit https://uwua.net.