Getting Massachusetts to Work

Getting Massachusetts to Work

News from the office of Rep. Ann-Margaret Ferrante

Dear Joey

One of my highest priorities as your State Representative has been to create jobs and job training opportunities for the people of Cape Ann. Working with our state, local, non-profit, and corporate partners, we have created pathways to new careers for the people on Cape Ann, which serve as models for communities throughout out Massachusetts. Some of these opportunities include:

  • GHS-ENSATS-Laborers Pre-Apprenticeship Program, an academic partnership for Gloucester High School students who want to go into the trades as a union craft laborer.
  • Gloucester Biotechnology Academy, which prepares post-high school students for careers as entry-level technicians in biotechnology and life sciences laboratories.
  • MediClerk Training Program from Wellspring House, an occupational education program training adult job-seekers for entry level administrative and support positions within the health care field.
  • Trades Gateway Program from Action Inc, which connects job seekers with the training they need to become an Electrician, Plumber, HVAC Technician, Commercial Truck Driver, and more.
  • Advanced Manufacturing Training Expansion Program, in partnership with the GE Foundation, which aims to prepare Cape Ann high school students and adult learners for careers in advanced manufacturing.

These specific programs are in addition to the career counseling services offered by local organizations such as Action Inc. and Wellspring House, as well as the Commonwealth’s MassHire Career Centers.

You will find an announcement in this email about the “HireNow” program, an additional effort the Commonwealth is making statewide to help employers hire and train new workers and to get people back to work in the post-pandemic world.

I’m extremely proud of the work we have done to build these pathways for our students and residents who wish to embark on a career that will help them provide for themselves and their families. I encourage you to share this information should you have a friend or family member on Cape Ann who is looking for a job or a new career.

Commonwealth Launches “HireNow” Hiring and Training Employer Grant Program

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts has launched a new hiring and training employer grant program, “HireNow,” which will help employers quickly hire and train new workers and get more people back to work. The new program provides eligible employers with a $4,000 per employee grant, which can be used to cover training costs or as a signing bonus for new employees. By providing employers with these flexible funds to facilitate quick hiring, the Commonwealth is focusing on addressing continued hiring challenges faced by employers and increasing labor force participation. Employers can learn more about the program and apply at www.mass.gov/hirenow.

HireNow is open to all Massachusetts employers, including both for-profit and non-profit entities (excluding federal, state, and municipal governments). The program aims to address hiring challenges faced by employers that have been brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. According to a recent analysis of Bureau of Labor Statistics data, there are over 85,000 workers not participating in the labor market compared to pre-pandemic levels. Meanwhile, employers’ need for workers has continued to increase, with unfilled job postings up 20% compared to pre-pandemic levels and approximately 200,000 open jobs available across the Commonwealth.

The Commonwealth is focused on addressing these challenges through a variety of efforts, including by expanding access and awareness to its existing apprenticeshipsincumbent worker training programs, the Career Technical Initiative, and more. Local MassHire Workforce Boards are also expanding resources to match employers and workers with training programs, and regions are hiring new staff members to serve as regional “Market Makers” to connect companies to graduates of new education and training programs starting up in their areas funded by the American Rescue Plan Act. These staff members will be regional points of contact to help match employers’ needs with both job-seekers and the skill-building programs needed to successfully fill open jobs. In addition, MassHire Centers are adding staff to work directly with job seekers who want to enroll in new training programs to gain more skills. 

The HireNow program will build on these efforts by providing resources directly to employers that make it possible to immediately hire new employees and provide them with necessary training to fill open roles. The program will be supported by $50 million in American Rescue Plan Act funds.

Program Details:

  • Employer Eligibility: Any Massachusetts employer who is in good standing with Department of Unemployment Assistance and Department of Revenue obligations and is not de-barred by the state is eligible (excluding federal, state, and municipal governments). Applications must be submitted by the employer, not an education or training partner.
  • Application Process: Employers must pre-register online at Mass.Gov/HireNow by providing employer information. Following the employee’s hire and 60-day retention period, employers will submit a final application for funding. The Commonwealth will also approve the planned use of the funds (training costs,

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