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US Labor Department awards more than $7.6 million to 5 states for innovative re-employment strategies

Idaho, Minnesota, Mississippi, New York and Oregon aim to improve services for unemployed workers

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Labor today awarded more than $7.6 million in grants to five states to design and implement innovative strategies that will improve re-employment services for unemployed workers. States receiving these funds responded to a "call to innovate" around a new national vision and framework that aim to create an integrated workforce customer registration process, use real-time data for enhanced decision-making, highlight skills transferability and leverage social media tools.

"Getting America back to work is a top priority of the Department of Labor," said Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis. "Doing so requires more creative thinking and innovative solutions than ever before, and these grants will help states take the next steps to improve services to unemployed workers."

Idaho, Minnesota, Mississippi, New York and Oregon will use the funds to design a common "front door" to the workforce system to ensure Unemployment Insurance claimants have immediate access to re-employment services when they file claims for benefits; improve data integration and assess transferable skills to help claimants and workforce professionals make decisions; and effectively incorporate social media to connect unemployed workers with jobs. The tools and resources developed by the states will be implemented in partnership with Local Workforce Boards and One-Stop Career Centers, and will serve as a model to improve re-employment services nationally.

These grants are awarded in partnership with the National Association of State Workforce Agencies and are funded through the Workforce Investment Act.  

Editor’s note: A complete list of grantees and award amounts follows this release.





Idaho Department of Labor



Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development



Mississippi Department of Employment Security


New York

New York Department of Labor

$2,000,000 plus $750,000*


Oregon Employment Department





* Indicates grant funds are specifically focused on the use of social media 

© Copyright 2019 U.S. Department of Labor


About this Author

The Department of Labor (DOL) fosters and promotes the welfare of the job seekers, wage earners, and retirees of the United States by improving their working conditions, advancing their opportunities for profitable employment, protecting their retirement and health care benefits, helping employers find workers, strengthening free collective bargaining, and tracking changes in employment, prices, and other national economic measurements. In carrying out this mission, the Department administers a variety of Federal labor laws including those that guarantee workers’ rights to safe and...