By Mary Gardner Clagett, senior director at JFF
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, a Democrat from New York, and Rep. Karen Bass, a Democrat from California, have introduced the Build Local, Hire Local Act, an important piece of legislation that calls for critical investments in America’s infrastructure and would create career and training opportunities for people from underrepresented populations.
The bill would yield critical investments in the U.S. infrastructure, create jobs, and generate new skills development opportunities.
The legislation’s targeted hiring provisions encourage the employment of residents of the communities in which infrastructure projects take place, including individuals who face barriers to employment. Those provisions would create expanded opportunities for good jobs for people from marginalized populations—and those jobs would be in the individuals’ local communities.
JFF strongly supports the bill’s $5 billion Building American Infrastructure and Careers Program, which provides career pathways training programs that could lead to high-quality infrastructure jobs.
If this legislation becomes law, it would not only yield critical investments in the nation’s infrastructure, but also create jobs and generate new skills development opportunities for our most disenfranchised populations.