President Obama’s Council on Jobs and Competitiveness has selected New York as the incubator for a partnership between government, industry employers, labor and colleges to increase employment rates through developing appropriate training programs.
Leaders from the 1199SEIU Training and Employment Funds, the union and the healthcare industry attended the New York Healthcare Workforce’s “Training, Listening and Action Session” to discuss and share best practices of addressing industry workforce needs. The event, which took place on Monday, December 12th at LaGuardia Community College, focused on New York as a national model for how cities and states across the country can address their healthcare workforce needs.
Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius, introduced and moderated a panel discussion about the continuing demand for healthcare workers and the best ways to train, place and retain a skilled healthcare workforce. The panel consisted of industry leaders – many of whom are already involved in a current training and/or upgrading program for healthcare workers with our 1199SEIU Training and Employment Funds programs.
The panel included 1199SEIU President George Gresham; Pamela Brier, President and CEO, Maimonides Medical Center, State Department of Health Commissioner Nirav Shah, as well as Gail Mellow, President of LaGuardia Community College. The panel explored the skills gap that has healthcare employers struggling to fill some positions as the industry grows and changes. Panelists discussed strategies to build the skills necessary to upgrade the current workforce, enable the unemployed to fill health industry vacancies and provide opportunities for young people in healthcare.
The 1199SEIU Training and Employment Funds are playing a key role, leading the nation in helping to strengthen the healthcare workforce and the quality of care.