Coons, Young, Norcross, McKinley reintroduce bill to expand registered apprenticeships to new job sectors
Sens. Chris Coons, D-Delaware, and Todd Young, R-Indiana, and Reps. Donald Norcross, D-New Jersey, and David McKinley, R-West Virginia, reintroduced on Jan. 28 the Apprenticeship Hubs Across America Act to expand the registered apprenticeship model to high-growth job sectors.
The bill is also cosponsored by Sens. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, and Jerry Moran, R-Kansas.
The act establishes a new initiative at the U.S. Department of Labor to expand apprenticeship hubs, which are organizations that help employers design, develop and deliver registered apprenticeship programs. A major barrier to expanding registered apprenticeships in high-growth job sectors outside of the skilled trades is employers’ lack of familiarity with the process to set up and manage registered apprenticeship programs. The act addresses this need by supporting a national network of apprenticeship hubs that convene local workforce boards, community colleges, unions and employers to help support the expansion of the registered apprenticeship model. In the 116th Congress, the bill passed the U.S. House of Representatives as a part of the National Apprenticeship Act of 2020, H.R. 8294. The Senate did not vote on the bill.
“I’m proud to reintroduce the Apprenticeship Hubs Across America Act at a time when government investment in quality job training programs is more important than ever,” said Coons. “By supporting organizations that help employers design, develop and deliver Registered Apprenticeship Programs, we can re-skill and prepare millions of America’s displaced workers for work in not only the trades, but also in advanced manufacturing, health care, science, hospitality and information technology. I was pleased the bill passed the House of Representatives last Congress, and I urge my colleagues in both chambers to advance this legislation.”
Apprenticeship Hubs participate in various activities, such as providing guidance and mentorship of apprentices to ensure retention and completion, working with employers to design the apprenticeship curriculum and navigating the registration process for apprenticeships. The bill also instructs the Department of Labor to conduct national workshops on how to create apprenticeship hubs and disseminate best practices on the effective development and implementation of registered apprenticeship programs. In Delaware, Delaware Pathways is an apprenticeship hub that convenes education and workforce leaders in the state and leverages community support to broaden career pathways for youth by developing new apprenticeship programs in various occupations.
The bill text is available at bit.ly/3ciTEIX, and a one-pager can be found at bit.ly/2L39PyU.