Monday, May 10, 2010

PathWays PA E-Newsletter: May 10, 2010

State

Support the Pennsylvania Center for Health Careers

Last week, the State Senate approved a bill intended to address the short- and long-term health care worker supply concerns by creating The Pennsylvania Center for Health Careers within the state's Department of Labor and Industry.

A similar center has been in operation as part of the Governor’s Workforce Investment Board initiative since 2004. This bill makes the office a permanent part of the department. The goal for the Center is to create jobs and improve health care in Pennsylvania. It is estimated that Pennsylvania will be in need of 38,000 nurses by 2015.

The bill now moves onto the State House for consideration. Please contact your Representative and ask him or her to support this bill.


Child Care Works Waiting List Cleared

With the help of federal stimulus funds, the Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL) and the Child Care Information Service (CCIS) agencies were able to provide Child Care Works subsidy to every family on the waiting list for the first time since 2003.

The Child Care Works Program helps low-income families pay their child care fees. Both state and federal government fund this program, which is managed by a CCIS office located in each county.

Please encourage eligible families to sign up for Child Care Works assistance as immediate service or short waiting time is now expected. Families can apply online or visit their local CCIS agency. A listing of CCIS agencies is available on the DPW website.

Support Adult Basic and Literacy Education

Adult education and family literacy programs are especially important during this recession to ensure that families have the opportunity to gain the education they need to become self-sufficient. Any cuts in funding will only result in even longer waiting lists and less people served.

The Pennsylvania Associate of Continuing Adult Education (PAACE) is asking individuals to write letters to their state legislators to discuss the importance of these programs. The letter discusses taking a balanced approach to the state budget and avoiding further cuts to the non-profit sector, including adult basic and literacy education.

Below is a sample letter from PAACE:

Subject: A Balanced Approach to the Budget

This letter can be put on letterhead or have a personal address.

Dear (Senator or Representative)_________________:

On behalf of the adult basic and family literacy education community in your district, and most especially on behalf of adult learners, I urge you to take a balanced approach to the state budget by raising revenue instead of further cutting jobs and programs in the Commonwealth’s nonprofit sector. Our services support your constituents.

This year, despite increased waiting lists due to 26% cuts in the state adult basic and literacy education budget, adult learners in our agency, ________________ (name of program), have successfully (prepared for the GED, transition into the workforce, increased workplace skills through workforce education, studied English as a second language, etc.). Let me share with you _______________’s (name of learner to highlight) story:

Instead of further cutting funding to adult basic and literacy education, higher education, hospitals, and social services, I urge you to choose from the many options available to increase revenue to prevent further cuts to essential services in 2010-11.

Please support a balanced approach to the budget by taking these measures to ensure that the Commonwealth’s nonprofit sector can continue to serve Pennsylvanians and maintain the overall health and future prosperity of the Commonwealth.

If you would like to visit a literacy program in your district, please contact me at (include email or telephone number).

Sincerely,


(Typed Name)
(Title)


Information/Events

Join the Wake-Up Call

Join the Southeastern Pennsylvania Budget Coalition for their two-part kickoff event. They will be giving out coffee as a wake up to constituents that we need to avoid balancing the state budget through cuts alone.

WHEN: Wednesday, May 12th, 7:30-8:30 am
WHERE: Media Train Station, 301 Media Station Road, Rose Valley (at South Orange Street)

The Coalition then invites you to take the train to Philadelphia Suburban Station or meet them there for a press event.

WHEN: Wednesday, May 12th at 10 A.M.
WHERE: Suburban Station Entrance, 16th and JFK Blvd., Philadelphia

RSVP for the main event at Philadelphia Suburban Station, or to find out about a satellite event near you, contact the Southeastern Pennsylvania Budget Coalition Coordinator Kate Atkins at (215) 563-5848 x16 or sepabudget@gmail.com.

The Southeastern Pennsylvania Budget Coalition represents over 100 organizations calling for a balanced approach to the budget that includes revenue enhancements to prevent cuts to essential services. http://pabudgetnow.wordpress.com

Campus Philly Opportunity Fair

Recruit local college talent into your workforce during Campus Philly’s Opportunity Fair.

WHEN: June 15th, 12:00 -3:00
WHERE: Drexel University’s Bossone Center

This live, in-person fair will connect recent graduates to professional-level internships, jobs, contacts, career resources and graduate/professional school opportunities.

As an employer we invite you to recruit:
  • Full-time entry level positions
  • Part-time entry level positions
  • Professional level internships
The Opportunity Fair is designed to connect regional employers to recent college graduates looking to stay in Greater Philadelphia. Last year we had over 850 graduates attend representing over 140 different colleges and universities.

Space is limited, so be sure to register today.

PathWays PA Information and Initiatives


Take Action on Earned Sick Time

48 percent of workers in the United States have no access to earned sick time, which means that if they are sick (or if their family members are sick) they must choose between working sick or losing their pay (or their jobs). If you are one of the 48 percent who have no earned sick time - or one of the 52 percent who do - please take our survey and tell us more!

There are bills at the federal, state, and local level to support earned sick time for everyone - here is what you can do:
  • Support the Federal Healthy Families Act! Under The Healthy Families Act, workers would have the opportunity to earn one hour of paid sick time for every 30 hours worked, up to 7 days of sick time per year. This time could be used to care for workers or their families, or could be used as "safe days" in cases of domestic violence. Tell your legislators that we need paid sick days now!
  • Support the paid sick days campaign in Pennsylvania and Philadelphia! Become our friend! Show your support for earned sick time by visiting Facebook. You can support earned sick time in Pennsylvania and in Philadelphia. Support both!
  • If you don't live in Pennsylvania, you can still support earned sick time. Visit The National Partnership for Women and Families website to learn more about campaigns in your area.
  • Tell us your story! Are you a parent who lost their job to stay home with a sick child? Are you a business owner who provides/supports paid sick days? Email your story to us at policy@pathwayspa.org.
  • Call your Representatives! If you live in Philadelphia, call your City Councilperson and urge them to support "Promoting Healthy Families and Workplaces," which guarantees earned sick time for all working Philadelphians. Not sure who your City Councilperson is? Click on this link and type in your home address to find out which district you live in: http://www.phila.gov/citycouncil/districtform/districtform.html.
  • If you live in Pennsylvania (but outside of Philadelphia), call your state Representative. Tell him/her you support earned sick time for workers. Not sure who your Representative is? Simply type your address here: http://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/home/find.cfm.

Do You Need Help Paying for Post-Secondary Education?

PathWays PA offers Individual Development Accounts (IDAs), a matched savings program that offers financial education while helping you save for school. Through the program, your savings can be matched at a rate of three-to-one. If you save $500, we will give you an additional $1500 to go towards your school expenses.

Applicants must meet program income guidelines, be working (full or part time), and be enrolled or accepted into an accredited institution.

If you are interested or have any questions, please e-mail Kelly Binder at kbinder@pathwayspa.org.


Need Assistance With Public Benefits Applications?

PathWays PA provides assistance to those who need help applying for food stamps or other benefits. For further information, you can contact our office in Philadelphia 215-387-1470 or Delaware County 610-543-5022.

For more information about the services provided by PathWays PA please visit our website.

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