Local Programs to Help some Job Seekers

Recently we’ve had guests visit our Unemployed & Underemployed Support Group to describe the programs that their agencies have for certain people in the low wage earner and job seeker categories.

The Department of Social Services has a couple of programs which help with the mobility issue that plagues many people, particularly in the outlying, rural areas of the county. Gas cards and bus passes are available if you meet some criteria. Are you a recipient of food stamps or Medicaid? or does your household have an income less than 200% of the Federal Poverty Level? Are you working or actively looking for a job? Are you a US citizen or have immigration status? And do you have a child under 18 (or one who is under 19 but still in high school or BOCES?) or is anyone in your household pregnant?

Call Cynthia Kloppel, Mobility Program Specialist at DSS at 274-5022 to discuss the Mobility Program.

Another program available from Challenge Industries is the Wage Subsidy Program. The goal of this program is ‘to encourage employers to hire and retain workers who face barriers in obtaining and maintaining a job through traditional employment channels.’

Employers are reimbursed for 75% of the wages and benefits paid to individuals enrolled in the program for three to six months of their initial employment. The remaining 25% of the salary is paid to the employer after 90 days of un-subsidized employment. The employer must make a good faith commitment to retain successful WSP participants.

As a participant in the program, you will be helped by Challenge with training, employability plans, job support and referrals for other services (such as transportation and child care, for example).

Once again, you must have a child under 18 in order to qualify for this program. You must meet other requirements as well. If you would like more information about this program or other programs that Challenge conducts, call Brian Scime, Job Developer, at 272-8990, Extension 139.

Obviously, not everyone is eligible for these programs but we hope that someone who can be served by them will hear about them through our website, blog or Support Group.