Sequestration will impact Baltimore job programs

BALTIMORE - Budget cuts due to the Sequestration are expected to have a "significant impact" on Baltimore's job programs.

In a press release issued Monday, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake's office announced that nearly a half million dollars in funding would be lost. 

Adult job/workforce training programs will be hit the hardest with more than $350,000 expected to be cut via limitations on the Workforce Investment Act (WIA). An additional $150,000 could be eliminated from WIA-funded youth programs.

"At a time when Baltimore City-like the rest of the nation-continues its recovery from the Great Recession and struggles to lower its unemployment rate, reduction in training services to help the unemployed and underemployed will undermine progress made to date," said Karen Sitnick, director of the Mayor's Office of Employment Development. "We will need to scale back on programs designed to create career pathways for hundreds of residents, including dislocated workers who have suffered layoffs through no fault of their own."

"Sequestration is a meat-cleaver approach to spending reduction with a real impact that will be felt by vulnerable families in Baltimore," said Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake. "If the sequester is sustained, cuts to workforce development-as well as those to public safety, housing, and education-will have an adverse effect on Baltimore and cities throughout the country."

Among those to be affected are adults and dislocated workers receiving job readiness, computer literacy, and employment assistance at Baltimore's three career centers, as well as those enrolled or preparing to enroll in occupational skills training programs in industries such as health care, information technology and bioscience.

Check back with ABC2 News as we continue to develop this story.

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