14 August 2007

Ward 5 Town Hall Meeting on Proposed Multicultural Training & Employment Center - Wednesday, August 15th

What: Share your thoughts with Councilman Thomas regarding the need for this center to be tentatively located in Ward 5 in close proximity to Home Depot.

When: Wednesday, August 15th, 2007, 7-9pm

Where: Israel Baptist Church, 1251 Saratoga Ave, NE

From Councilman Thomas:

What it is: The Center will be an inclusive training, career, and employment center that will provide a range of services to Ward 5 residents—particularly the residents of Brentwood, Edgewood, and Montana Terrace—and other under-served groups.

Why it’s needed: The Brentwood, Edgewood, and Montana Terrace neighborhoods traditionally have had high rates of unemployment. On average, one in 10 adults in these neighborhoods are unemployed. A Center that addresses employment and training needs is greatly needed for these neighborhoods. An organized system linking contractors and individuals seeking work from contractors at the Home Depot site is also needed.

What it will do: The core mission of the Center will be to provide comprehensive employment and training services to residents of the adjacent Ward 5 neighborhoods and other under-served groups. The Center will offer a wide range of classes, ranging from language immersion to financial literacy and assistance with preparing local and federal income taxes. The Center will also have services geared toward manual laborers, including those seeking work from contractors at the Home Depot site.

Community: The Center will include local labor and community organizations like Israel Baptist Church's Facing It Together (FIT) Academy as partners. The FIT Academy is a neighborhood-based organization with a track record of providing residents of Brentwood, Edgewood, and Montana Terrace with job training and readiness skills. In the past year, the program has placed more than 30 individuals in jobs. By linking with local labor and community organizations and leveraging their program successes, the Center will bring effective employment and job training services to Ward 5 residents and other under-served groups.

A national model: The Center envisioned for Ward 5 has the potential to be a national model showcasing how employment and training services focusing on African-Americans, Latinos, and any other under-served group can be incorporated together in a single, inclusive facility. The Center brings job readiness and placement programs directly to the Ward 5 neighborhoods that need them the most.

Angel Nix at 202.724.8107 or snix@dccouncil.us
Vicky Leonard-Chambers at 202.727.8204 or vleonardchambers@dccouncil.us

Day laborers outside the Home Depot at the Rhode Island Avenue Plaza - Photo by Pouya Dianat/The Washington Post
» WaPo, 6.17.07, "As Plan for D.C. Day-Laborer Center Idles, Anger Over Workers Grows"
» The Washington Times, 7.5.07, "Day laborers shower us with culture, irrigation"
» The Washington Times, 7.16.07, "Two sites eyed for D.C. day-labor center"

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