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Maryland Department of Labor Initiative Responsible for More than 1,000 Marylanders in Jobs

Industry-led Effort Helps Strengthen Maryland Businesses and Workforce

BALTIMORE, MD (August 16, 2016) – Kelly M. Schulz, Secretary of the Maryland Department of Labor today announced that, through the Employment Advancement Right Now (EARN) Maryland initiative, more than 1,000 unemployed and underemployed Marylanders have jobs. Further, through this business-led initiative, more than 2,500 Maryland workers have been trained in skills they need to compete and succeed in today’s workforce.

“Lives have been forever changed because of EARN Maryland. EARN’s latest accomplishment proves that when Maryland’s businesses are given the tools they need to succeed, the State is truly changed for the better. I am looking forward to the continued success of this nationally recognized workforce solution,” said Maryland Labor Secretary Kelly M. Schulz.

EARN Maryland is an industry-led State initiative designed to ensure that Maryland businesses have the talent they need to compete and grow while providing targeted education and skills training to Maryland workers. The Department funds 40 Partnerships across the State who are delivering training in a variety of industries, including information technology, healthcare, manufacturing and construction. EARN Maryland, which is just over two years old and has been recognized as a best practice by the National Skills Coalition, has more than 500 employer partners contributing to the program design and implementation.

Partnerships are providing job readiness and skills training to prepare unemployed and underemployed Marylanders for meaningful careers. Many of these participants have various barriers to employment, which includes education, transportation and criminal backgrounds.

Of the unemployed and underemployed who have participated in EARN Maryland training, 1,091 or 78 percent have obtained employment. “Employers are driving the training in partnership with community organizations,” said Laura Spada, Executive Director for the Baltimore Alliance for Careers in Healthcare. “The work of finding qualified applicants for open positions has become easier as these two groups work together to identify employers’ needs while preparing the unemployed community members to meet those needs,” she added.

Employer partners also describe a need to strengthen the skills for those who want to advance in their current careers. To date, more than 2,500 incumbent workers have been trained, and employer partners report such benefits as improved productivity, cost-savings, wages, and job retention. “We have seen measurable results which have led to reduced errors and improved work efficiencies within our production team,” said Basile Whitaker, President of Quality Biological, a manufacturer out of Gaithersburg. “We strongly recommend the EARN program, because it works.”

For more information about EARN Maryland, including a link to the 2015 Annual Report and information about the partnerships, visit the Department’s website, e-mail the Department’s EARN Maryland team at earn.jobs@maryland.gov, or contact the Division of Workforce Development and Adult Learning at (410) 767-2173.

About DLLR
The Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation (DLLR) is committed to safeguarding and protecting Marylanders. We're proud to support the economic stability of the state by providing businesses, the workforce, and the consuming public with high-quality, customer-focused regulatory, employment, and training services. For updates and information, follow DLLR on Twitter (@MD_DLLR), Facebook and visit our website.