Congresswoman Frederica S. Wilson Introduces the Jobs Now Act of 2017
Washington, D.C. – Congresswoman Frederica S. Wilson introduced this week the Jobs Now Act of 2017, legislation that aims to help Americans struggling to find work and provide two-year grants to cities, counties and qualified nonprofit organizations to train, hire, and retain people to work in public service jobs.
“Since my first day on Capitol Hill, my mantra has been ‘Jobs! Jobs! Jobs!’” said Congresswoman Wilson. “The national unemployment rate has dropped significantly, but certain demographic groups and Americans living in high-poverty, high-unemployment areas often find it nearly impossible to secure good-paying jobs that would enable them to support themselves and their families. In Florida, for example, African-American unemployment is almost twice the rate for whites and the state’s overall rate.”
The Jobs Now Act of 2017 would allocate funds through a competitive grant process that prioritizes communities facing high levels of poverty, unemployment, and home foreclosures. It would encourage cities, counties, and nonprofits to prioritize hiring veterans, individuals with disabilities, individuals receiving unemployment benefits and dislocated workers. In addition, local governments and nonprofits would be allowed to use up to half of their funds to preserve public service positions, such as police officers, firefighters, or teachers and use the remaining funds to hire or train individuals for new or existing positions.
“Congress is long overdue to pass comprehensive legislation to help Americans get back to work,” said the Florida lawmaker. “This bill would help the long-term unemployed find work and also support vital local public services.”