Archive for April, 2017

Plan will affect Jacksonville jobs

Saturday, April 8th, 2017

A new plan regarding the H1-B program may affect Jacksonville jobs.

The U.S. Department of Labor revealed plans to protect U.S. workers from H-1B program discrimination by providing greater transparency and oversight.

The program allows employers to hire highly skilled foreign workers in specialty occupations. The H-1B visa program authorizes the temporary employment of qualified individuals who are not otherwise authorized to work in the U.S. In recent years, some employers have used the H-1B program to hire foreign workers despite American workers being qualified and available for work or even to replace American workers.

The department fully supports the U.S. Department of Justice in cautioning employers who petition for H-1B visas not to discriminate against U.S. workers, as well as the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s measures to further deter and detect H-1B visa fraud and abuse.

The department will protect American workers against discrimination through the following actions:

  • Rigorously use all of its existing authority to initiate investigations of H-1B program violators. This effort to protect U.S. workers will also involve greater coordination with other federal agencies, including the departments of Homeland Security and Justice for additional investigation and, if necessary, prosecution.
  • Consider changes to the Labor Condition Application for future application cycles. The Labor Condition Application, which is a required part of the H-1B visa application process, may be updated to provide greater transparency for agency personnel, U.S. workers and the general public.
  • Continue to engage stakeholders on how the program might be improved to provide greater protections for U.S. workers, under existing authorities or through legislative changes.

Grants to help some youth with Jacksonville jobs

Sunday, April 2nd, 2017

A new of new grants will go towards helping some formerly incarcerated youth to get Jacksonville jobs.

The U.S. Department of Labor announced $66 million in available funding to organizations to develop or expand programs to strengthen access to opportunity for these individuals.

The grants give organizations the opportunity to build customized interventions based on current evidence and research of “what works,” as well as promising practices.

Organizations that apply for this funding are encouraged to select, implement and test different program services or program models. The initiative focuses on assisting communities in planning and implementing comprehensive reentry programs.

These programs address the full range of challenges involved in helping formerly incarcerated adults and young adults transition back to the community. Programs like these protect community safety by ensuring that these individuals become productive, responsible and law-abiding members of society.

The funding will support programs for young adults – ages 18-24 – involved in the justice system or adults – ages 25 or older – who have been incarcerated in the adult criminal justice system and released from prison or jail within 180 days.

The department intends to award these grants to a combination of organizations serving rural and urban communities, and all projects must be located in high-poverty, high-crime areas.

The department’s Employment and Training Administration plans to award approximately $66 million through approximately 28 grant awards. ETA plans to award up to $4,500,000 each to approximately eight intermediary organizations – approximately three proposing to serve adults and approximately five proposing to serve young adults.

ETA will award at least $20 million to intermediaries serving young adults, and plans to award up to $1,500,000 each to approximately 20 community-based organizations – approximately 13 proposing to serve adults and approximately seven proposing to serve young adults.

Change in rule will affect Jacksonville jobs

Sunday, April 2nd, 2017

A change in the drug testing rule will affect Jacksonville jobs, among other areas.

President Donald J. Trump signed legislation to nullify a U.S. Department of Labor rule that narrowly limited the circumstances under which drug testing may be carried out by states in administering their unemployment insurance systems.

The president’s action halts a 2016 rule drawn up by the department’s Employment and Training Administration, based on a 2012 law. The rule contradicted clear congressional intent – it narrowly limited the circumstances under which drug testing may be carried out and constrained a state’s ability to conduct a drug testing program under the act.

“The Department of Labor supports the president’s nullification and looks forward to examining additional flexibilities for states relative to the drug testing of persons seeking unemployment benefits,” said Acting U.S. Secretary of Labor Ed Hugler.

The 2012 law amended the Social Security Act to add a new subsection permitting states to drug test unemployment compensation applicants as a condition of eligibility and deny jobless benefits for failing the test, under two specific circumstances:

  • If they were terminated from employment with their most recent employer because of the unlawful use of a controlled substance.
  • If the only available suitable work for an individual was in an occupation that regularly conducted drug testing.