A strong business climate depends on an educated and skilled workforce. And the Twin Cities region currently has the largest disparity in the nation between whites and blacks in unemployment rates. These basic facts are two key drivers of our current project on workforce development.
Equity concerns stand out as a critical justice issue, but equity is increasingly being identified as important to economic growth, as well. Yet traditional workforce development efforts often miss an excellent opportunity to address equity issues and boost employment for low-income Twin Cities residents.
Minnesota’s economy has long relied on higher-level skills than in other states. Advances in technology and medicine mean these employers need more skills all the time. National studies indicate that two-thirds of employers report having trouble finding the skills they seek in the workforce. Leveraging the potential of every person will be crucial to Minnesota's future economic health and success.
Growth & Justice aims to reframe the approach to workforce development in the Twin Cities region, laying the base for strategic workforce efforts linked to economic development and tied to equity, and access to long-term, sustainable and living wage jobs with career tracks for all workers.