Dear Friends and Supporters,

For three decades, the Consortium for Worker Education has dedicated itself to the development of New York's workforce. Through partnerships with unions and community organizations, CWE provides education, training, and job placement for tens of thousands of workers every year. Please read on for the latest news from the Consortium for Worker Education.



JtBO Partner: Black Veterans for Social Justice in 1979, Black Veterans for Social Justice is working at the nexus of race, class, and military-status to support New York’s veterans.

The organization serves 5,000 – 10,000 veterans per year, providing and referring them to services ranging from healthcare, to housing, to employment. BVSJ is a partner organization in CWE's Jobs to Build On program.

While a good job is key to economic stability, some veterans need other services first.

“Many are homeless,” says Tyrone Williams, Chief Operating Officer of BVSJ. “That is an impediment to getting employment.” BVSJ works to get homeless veterans into subsidized housing or shelter, which helps provide the stability they need to be ready for work.

Black Veterans for Social Justice also helps veterans with the other specific challenges they face when looking for work.

“Having served doesn’t always prepare you for employment after,” says Williams. BVSJ provides job training to veterans or refers them to another organization in the JtBO network with a vocational program of interest to the participant.

Some veterans take advantage of Brooklyn Workforce Innovation’s cable installation training. Others are being trained as Access-A-Ride drivers.

It is BVSJ’s strong roots in the community that in the end connect veterans to much-needed jobs, says Williams. “We are in touch with employers on a regular basis."

Thanks to BVSJ, the men and women who serve our country overseas have the support they need to succeed when they come home.

The JtBO services at Black Veterans for Social Justice are available to all New Yorkers, veteran or not.  Appointments can be made by phone or email and walk-ins are also accepted.



Participant Profile: Edward Gilliard


Edward Gilliard is like a lot of the veterans that Black Veterans for Social Justice assists.

He joined the Marine Corps in 2000 and was discharged after suffering an injury in 2002. After working in factories and warehouses, he ended up as a salesman, working on commission.

“It was not enough for someone who has to pay rent and bills,” says Edward. By the time Edward came to BVSJ, he was homeless and in need of help.

BVSJ found him housing, in a three bedroom apartment he shares with two other veterans. “BVSJ goes beyond the call of duty,” Edward says. They also got him ready for a job search and set up interviews, but soon both Edward and BVSJ realized his calling might be helping other veterans like himself.

Edward is now working as an Employment Specialist at BVSJ. He goes to Veterans Affairs offices and homeless shelters, looking for veterans in need of employment services. He gets them job interview ready, including resume building, but also help with getting clothing and a haircut so they can look their best.

“Every day I get to help someone just like me,” says Edward. “Hopefully the next success story will be someone I helped.”



First Grads at Lefrak City Library Program


Last year, CWE partnered with the Queens Public Library to launch a new job training program at library branches.

The newest addition is the Lefrak City library branch, which held its first graduation on December 18th.

Five students completed an eight-week program that included computer training, job readiness, and job search techniques. They now will transition to job placement services through community partner Urban Upbound.



Building Maintenance & Weatherization Program Means Jobs for North Manhattan


Northern Manhattan Improvement Corporation provides a six-week Building Maintenance and Weatherization program that teaches students the basics of carpentry, electricity, plumbing, and weatherization. The program is funded through Jobs to Build On. In addition to classroom-based and hands-on construction training, participants also receive job readiness lessons and have the chance to obtain their 10-Hour OSHA certification, an industry-recognized credential.

Congratulations to the most recent class, who graduated in December.