For Immediate Release: February 24, 2022
Contact: Mark Brueggenjohann 202-728-6014
IBEW applauds DOL for modernizing, expanding, diversifying Registered Apprenticeship Programs
Lonnie Stephenson, president of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, issued this statement on Apprenticeship Building America (ABA), a new grant program from the Department of Labor (DOL) designed to strengthen, modernize, expand and diversify Registered Apprenticeship Programs:
“The IBEW and its 775,000 members understand that we are stronger when people from all backgrounds join together. That is why we are committed to increasing diversity within the building trades by expanding access to our own Registered Apprenticeship Programs to traditionally underserved communities, including women, people of color, and veterans. We applaud the Department of Labor for recognizing the need to make Registered Apprenticeship Programs more inclusive and equitable, while promoting these programs as a workforce development solution.
“By allowing people to earn while they learn, apprenticeships give working people a reliable pathway to the middle class, while teaching skills upon which careers can be built. For people from marginalized communities, including single parents, veterans, and the formerly incarcerated, these programs can be life changing. By expanding and increasing access to Registered Apprenticeship Programs, the DOL will ensure more people have access to family-sustaining building trades jobs and the benefits of a strong, union contract.
“The IBEW looks forward to working with Secretary Walsh and the Department of Labor on this and other equity and diversity initiatives.”
The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) represents approximately 775,000 members and retirees who work in a wide variety of fields, including construction, utilities, manufacturing, telecommunications, broadcasting, railroads and government.