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Workforce Investment Act, Title I-B Dislocated Worker Program

Note: The Workforce Investment Act is being phased out in the next few months and replaced by the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). Most of WIOA takes effect July 1, 2016. Get more information about WIOA.

Contact: Kelly Lindseth
Employment Security Department
P.O. Box 9046
Olympia, WA 98507-9046
Telephone: (360) 902-9762
E-mail: klindseth@esd.wa.gov

State Websites: http://www.wa.gov/esd/1stop/

Local Link: http://www.washingtonworkforce.org/WDCs/index.php

Participation: 4,773 participants were served by the Workforce Investment Act, Dislocated Worker Program between July 1, 2014 and June 30, 2015.  

Who is Served: Specific eligibility guidelines are described in the Workforce Investment Act (WIA). Dislocated workers are people who lost jobs due to plant closures, company downsizing, or some other significant change in market conditions. In most cases, eligible workers are unlikely to return to their occupations because those jobs are no longer economically viable, and they must be eligible for (or have exhausted) unemployment compensation. Other conditions can lead to eligibility for services, such as being self-employed but not working as a result of general economic conditions, or being a displaced homemaker.

Program Description: The program tailors employment and training services to meet dislocated workers’ needs; establishes early intervention for workers and firms facing substantial layoffs; and fosters labor, management, and community partnerships with government to address worker dislocation. Dislocated workers are also eligible for “core services” including skill assessment, labor market information, training program consumer reports, and job search and placement assistance. Second and third tier services are available for eligible dislocated workers unable to get jobs through core services. Services are individualized and may include more intensive assessments, counseling, and pre-vocational and vocational training.

Other Program Characteristics: Local priorities for the WIA Title I-B Dislocated Worker grant must support the priorities described in each local Workforce Development Council’s strategic plan and must also be consistent with the goals identified in High Skills, High Wages, the state’s strategic plan for the workforce development system.

Program History: The Workforce Investment Act of 1998 (WIA) reformed federal employment, training, adult education, and vocational rehabilitation programs by creating an integrated system of workforce investment and education services for adults, dislocated workers, and youth. Known as WorkSource in Washington, this one-stop system offers a comprehensive array of services through local WorkSource centers and affiliate sites, and online. Washington’s Governor designated the Workforce Training and Education Coordinating Board (Workforce Board) to act as the state Workforce Investment Board and the Employment Security Department as WIA’s administrative entity. The state’s 12 workforce investment areas each have a business-led Workforce Development Council whose members are appointed by local elected officials. Councils have strategic and operational responsibilities, including planning and overseeing their area’s WorkSource systems and WIA-funded programs, as well as designating administrative entities and WorkSource operators. Congressional action to amend and reauthorize the law is ongoing.

Planning Cycle: Every two years.

State Core Measures: See Workforce Training Results at http://wtb.wa.gov/WorkforceTrainingResults.asp

Federal Common Measures: Federal measures used to determine the program’s success include:

  • Entered employment rate.
  • Employment retention rate.
  • Average earnings.

Funding and Regional Division: At the state level, services are described in a two-year State Plan developed by the Employment Security Department and the Workforce Board and approved by the Governor. The U.S. Department of Labor must approve the plan in order to access funds. At the local level, services are described in two-year operations plans developed by workforce development councils and chief local elected officials. Funds are allocated to the local workforce investment areas using federal and state allocation formulas.

State Expenditures: None.

Federal Expenditures: $22,709,000 (July 1, 2014-June 30, 2015)

Statutory Authority: Federal - Workforce Investment Act, P.L. 105-220. Administered by the Employment Security Department.

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