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Congressman Krishnamoorthi Introduces Bipartisan Partnership For American Jobs Act To Revitalize Job Growth

May 13, 2021
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL) introduced the bipartisan Partnership for American Jobs Act alongside Congressman Dan Meuser (R-PA). This bill would create a new Department of Education grant program for public media organizations to promote local educational and workforce opportunities through public media stations, which reach 99% of the American population. Harnessing the power of public media, this program would connect jobseekers, small businesses, and career technical institutions to address workforce development needs across the nation. Facilitating employment for sectors that are in-demand will improve the skills gap problem in America, where a 2019 survey found that 2.4 million jobs may be left open in the manufacturing sector over the next decade due to a lack of trained workers.

“Public broadcasting stations are uniquely suited to advertise high-demand jobs in local communities because they are engrained into the fabric of the community and can connect jobseekers to small businesses or career and technical education institutions,” Congressman Krishnamoorthi said. “A four-year degree is not for everyone, but a high-quality post-secondary education needs to be, and once we promote the information and the skills training that are available in local communities, our economy will be able to grow again as we leave this pandemic behind. Many of the resources for workers are already out there, but this will help us connect them to those resources so that they can see a path forward in fulfilling their American Dream, while at the same time strengthening the middle class. I appreciate Rep. Meuser’s leadership in co-leading this bill and proving that workforce development is a bipartisan issue, and I also want to also thank America's Public Television Stations for their support.” 

“There are 8.1 million open jobs in the U.S. and by harnessing the power of public media, which reaches 99% of the U.S., we can help connect job seekers with job opportunities,” Congressman Meuser said. “Our bill cultivates partnerships between public media, industry, educational institutions, and labor organizations for locally driven content that helps Americans earn credentials, grow skills, and get jobs. There’s a career path for everyone and the Partnerships for American Jobs Act will help close the skills gap and get Americans in good jobs that drive American innovation and growth. I want to thank Congressman Krishnamoorthi for his leadership on this bill and I look forward to working with him to see it become law.”  

“America’s Public Television Stations are most grateful to Congressman Krishnamoorthi and Congressman Meuser for re-introducing the Partnerships for American Jobs Act,” said Patrick Butler, President and CEO of America’s Public Television Stations. “The Partnerships for American Jobs Act will effectively address the skills gap by matching the versatile educational and training resources of public media with emerging job opportunities in a rapidly changing economy.”

This legislation builds on programs such as the “American Graduate” program administered by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting that provides high-quality educational content and helps expand exposure to career pathways for Americans across the country. This program has included hosting events with industry partners to connect students to mentoring, apprenticeships, and work-based learning; creating content for broadcast and digital platforms to raise awareness of job opportunities; and highlighting career pathways and how to access job resources.

Specifically, the Partnerships for American Jobs Act authorizes the creation of a competitive grant program at the Department of Education to support the development and distribution of digital media programming (video, radio, digital) to accomplish the following goals: 

  • Establish partnerships with business councils, labor organizations, educators, institutions of higher education, and other community leaders to help meet the workforce needs of state and local economies
  • Promote middle, high-school, and postsecondary student entrance into in-demand occupations
  • Promote student entrance into career pathway programs, such as career and vocational education programs
  • End the stigma associated with many in-demand occupations that lead to a successful, family-sustaining career