WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) and Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) today applauded the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) announcement that a supplemental National Dislocated Worker Grant (NDWG), worth up to $7.6 million, is being awarded to WorkForce West Virginia to help West Virginia workers affected by coal mining industry layoffs rejoin the workforce. The grant’s initial release of $3.2 million will assist about 900 participants enrolled in the grant project, and an additional 500 targeted participants impacted by recent layoffs.
“Onerous regulations and market forces have devastated many of our state’s mining communities. In these difficult times, we need to ensure that our displaced coal miners have access to job training and other services as they look for new jobs,” said Senator Capito. “As a member of the Appropriations Committee, I worked hard to ensure that funding to assist dislocated workers in the coal community was a priority.”
“These are unbelievably challenging times for our miners and our coal mining industry as we have seen a devastating amount of layoffs this year,” Senator Manchin said. “We need to do everything in our power to help our miners through these uncertain times. This funding will expand job training programs that will help them develop the skillsets necessary to fill other available positions. I thank Secretary Perez and the Department of Labor for this important funding.”
WorkForce West Virginia plans to use the funds to continue to provide reemployment and training. Services include: assessments, occupational guidance and counseling, on-the-job training, support services, job search, job placement and follow-up activities. Funds will also support maintenance and staff of United Mine Workers Career Centers, established to serve the affected workers. This includes costs for a center in Pennsylvania to serve residents there who were dislocated from coal jobs in West Virginia.