Reducing Barriers to Employment & Advancement

Reducing Barriers to Employment & Advancement

(Above) Thanks to United Way-funded programs, Antonio found a stable job he loves.

All adults of working age in our community should have the opportunity to obtain permanent employment with a livable wage at a workplace where they are treated with dignity and have opportunities for advancement.

Almost 9% of African-Americans in Milwaukee are unemployed vs. 2.7% of Caucasians – the largest gap of any American metropolitan area. In addition, Wisconsin is one of the highest-ranked outbound states in the country, with nearly 60% of movers leaving the state for a job.

United Way of Greater Milwaukee & Waukesha County’s Diversity Leadership Society is heading up an initiative to reduce barriers to employment and advancement for local, diverse individuals.

To do this, a multi-faceted approach will be implemented, including:

  • Education, training, and credentials: offer financial support to programs that help adults learn to read, earn their GED or other employment credentials, and teach English as a Second Language (ESL).
  • Transportation: support programs that help adults recover their driver’s license and assist youth in obtaining their initial driver’s license.
  • Involvement in the justice system: advocate for laws that promote expungement of records from public databases for non-violent offenders. Studies have shown that most employers are reluctant to hire applicants with criminal records, even for non-violent convictions.
  • Diverse Talent Retention: enlist the help of outside consultants to develop a survey tool to understand why diverse talent is leaving the region at such a high rate.

A gift to the Reducing Barriers to Employment & Advancement initiative will help United Way and our partners close the employment gap and significantly reduce barriers and challenges to stable employment for diverse individuals across our region. Donate today.


Reducing Barriers to Employment & Advancement Grant

Apply for funding here.

© 2020 United Way of Greater Milwaukee & Waukesha County is a 501(C)(3) Nonprofit registered in the US under EIN: 39-0806190.