The Minnesota AFL-CIO applauds the Department of Labor for awarding millions of dollars in grant money to support registered apprenticeship programs across the country, including the newly-formed Minnesota Regional Training Partnership.
The AFL-CIO Working for America Institute partners with Jobs for the Future, a national workforce intermediary, the Wisconsin Regional Training Partnership and labor-management intermediaries to expand and enhance apprenticeship for production workers in the manufacturing sector in 8 states, including Minnesota. This project will replicate the Industrial Manufacturing Technician (IMT) hybrid manufacturing apprenticeship in partnership with unions and their employers. It will promote the growth of the manufacturing sector and advance the skills of production workers.
The IMT program is already being rolled out in Minnesota. At the suggestion of their union, BCTGM Local 22, workers at Baldinger Bakery recently began an apprenticeship program.
“We are proud of the professional skills that Minnesota union apprenticeship programs already provide to workers,” said Minnesota AFL-CIO President Shar Knutson. “Apprenticeships are an important pathway to jobs that provide working people with wages to sustain a family. As we look at innovative ways to combat income inequality and to raise wages for all workers, apprenticeship programs should be at the center of that discussion.”
The apprenticeship grants are part of a larger push by the Obama Administration to highlight the need for affordable, quality career and education choices for students and workers.