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Wednesday, February 11, 2015

The state has made $5.4 million available to help businesses grow by training and hiring formerly unemployed individuals. Overseen by the Gov. Andrew Cuomo's Unemployment Strikeforce, the funding is available to businesses in amounts of up to $100,000 to support a variety of essential worker training programs.

“Access to a well-trained workforce is critical for the private sector to grow and create jobs,” Gov. Cuomo said. “With this funding, we’re encouraging businesses in some of the most economically distressed parts of the State to invest in their workforce and help formerly unemployed New Yorkers get back to work. This is another way that we’re working to increase employment and bring new opportunities to communities across New York State.”

This $5.4 million is available to businesses looking to expand their workforce and can be used for On-the-Job, Apprenticeship or Customized training, depending on the individual needs of the employer. The Governor’s Unemployment Strikeforce has staff who will work with all interested parties to develop programs best suited to their business and secure all funding and other incentives for which that business is eligible.

As part of his Opportunity Agenda address last month, Governor Cuomo announced that the successful Unemployment Strikeforce will be expanded into the ten areas in the state with the highest unemployment rates. The expanded Unemployment Strikeforce will bring the same kind of targeted job recruitment, career and business services used to great effect in the Bronx to Jefferson, Lewis, Kings, St. Lawrence, Oswego, Orleans, Montgomery, Franklin and Steuben Counties.

The Governor’s Unemployment Strikeforce was piloted in the Bronx in May 2014 and charged with two goals:

  1. Find a way to reduce the unemployment rates in the counties with the persistently highest levels (12-month average) of unemployment.
  2. Ensure that we are investing our workforce development funding wisely. A real job must be waiting at the end of the training the State is investing in.

Since then, more than 7,000 people from the Bronx have been placed in jobs through the initiative. An additional 1,300 individuals were connected to work in Jefferson and Lewis counties under the Strikeforce.

“The State Department of Labor is committed to Governor Cuomo’s goal of lowering unemployment through a comprehensive, business-need driven, regional approach and the smart allocation of our resources,” said Acting Labor Commissioner Mario J. Musolino. “We can target unemployment where it’s at its worst and help re-build communities. That’s what we’ve done in the Bronx and that’s what we’ll continue to do throughout the state.”

For more information and to learn how to can apply for funding, visit

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