In collaboration with the Long Island Federation of Labor and YouthBuild, WDI has been working to implement a pre-apprentice program that could provide youth with the education and experience required to then apply for an apprenticeship with a union trade. The program – still in development – includes components in housing education, job readiness (soft skills), construction basics, career development, leadership development, counseling, and graduate services. A strong focus is planned for green industry job opportunities in energy efficiency and weatherization.
WDI has played a leadership role in the Long Island Smart Growth Working Group to advance smart growth principles in parallel to other regional economic development efforts. WDI has represented labor’s interest in a number of forums, including the LIREDC Workforce and Education Working Group, Cleaner Greener Communities Regional Sustainability Plan Workings Groups, LI Clean Energy Leadership Task Force, LI Business Council, and others.
English as a Second Language
WDI provided “English as a Second Language” programs for Long Island food service workers that enabled the workers to keep their jobs, and in some cases receive promotions to more advanced levels within their organization.