Hershey, PA – Pennsylvania must continue to make smart investments in education and job training to create the most skilled and qualified workforce in the nation, Governor Tom Wolf today told the Pennsylvania Workforce Development Association (PWDA).
During his remarks, the governor outlined his proposed Statewide Workforce, Education, and Accountability Program (SWEAP), the centerpiece of his 2019-20 budget. SWEAP is a bold and sensible plan to rebuild Pennsylvania’s economy and prioritize skills training from birth to retirement.
The governor has traveled the commonwealth to hear from business owners, industry leaders, and hardworking Pennsylvanians about how the Wolf Administration can help them thrive. In addition to proposing a minimum wage increase, other actions the governor has taken to close the skills gap and support manufacturing and new growth industries include:
- Increasing registered apprenticeships by 21 percent since 2016 after launching the Apprenticeship Training Office. Pennsylvania now has nearly 17,000 registered apprentices
- Establishing the Keystone Economic Development and Workforce Command Center that brings together commonwealth agencies and the private sector to address the skills gap, worker shortages, and other workforce challenges.
- Starting the Manufacturing PA Initiative to support critical training in that important sector of the economy.
- Modernizing job licensing requirements to remove barriers to employment so hardworking Pennsylvanians can enter careers of their choice.
- Championing Clean Slate, a first of its kind law enacted with overwhelming bipartisan support that helps formerly incarcerated or arrested individuals get their lives back on track and find employment.
- Joining the Skillful State Network, a nonprofit initiative of the Markle Foundation to emphasize the importance of skills so workers, particularly those without four-year college degrees, can get good jobs in the changing economy.