The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act is a once-in-a-generation piece of legislation, estimated to create almost 800,000 jobs annually over the course of 10 years—primarily meaningful, family-sustaining work in construction and skilled trades. The largest infrastructure investment in decades must take steps to ensure access to good jobs for underrepresented workers, including women and communities of color.
As infrastructure dollars roll out to the states, efforts to ensure a diverse workforce must be two-pronged: Supply-side efforts recruit and train a diverse workforce, whereas demand-side efforts ensure that contractors hire and retain diverse workers. One particularly promising practice is the expansion and diversification of apprenticeship programs, which can expand pipelines into building trades professions.
On January 31 at 1 p.m. ET, the Center for American Progress and North America’s Building Trades Unions will welcome Secretary of Labor Martin J. Walsh and a distinguished panel of innovative policymakers and leading labor voices to discuss efforts to ensure equity in the infrastructure workforce.
Secretary Martin J. Walsh, Department of Labor
Sean McGarvey, President, North America’s Building Trades Unions
Liz Shuler, President, AFL-CIO
Del. Melissa Wells (D), Baltimore City, Maryland
Mayor Randall L. Woodfin (D), Birmingham, Alabama
Patrick Gaspard, President and Chief Executive Officer, Center for American Progress