Green jobs have repeatedly been praised as a viable way to provide a pathway out of poverty for millions of under- and unemployed Americans. Green jobs training programs are cropping up in urban settings across the nation and organizations like the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights continue to keep this important message at the forefront. To help further the green collar jobs movement, the organization recently launched Making Green Work: Best Practices in Green-Collar Job Training.
The new toolkit is the culmination of years of green jobs advocacy work by both the Ella Baker Center and the Oakland Apollo Alliance. These organizations have taken their expertise and published it to help other groups design and launch their own green collar job training programs.
The toolkit features the organization’s definition of a green collar job, best practices for green jobs training programs, case studies from several successful California-based green jobs training programs, a section on public policy, and a resource section that will help guide other organizations as they create and implement their own programs.
"This is a challenging time for workforce development. The U.S. is in the midst of the worst economic crisis in generations, with California being hard hit," said Ian Kim of the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights. "Giving communities the tools to provide green job training is an essential part of California's pathway toward economic recovery which will be driven by growth in our state's green construction, solar, weatherization, and other ecological industries." Source: Ella Baker Center
Defining green jobs and green collar jobs is not always straightforward. The Ella Baker Center has defined green collar jobs as employment opportunities in industries that help improve the environment, provide opportunities for individuals that are not included in the current work force, are blue-collar in nature, and are quality jobs. These jobs must be good green jobs.
The organizations featured in the toolkit’s case studies section provide these good green jobs to underserved communities in California. Graduates of these training programs are able to obtain gainful employment while giving back to local communities through weatherization and other community revitalization projects.
The Making Green Work toolkit is a great resource for other organizations seeking to start a successful green collar job training program in their communities. For more information, visit the Making Green Work website or download the toolkit now (PDF).