Tennessee Receives More than $12 Million for Trade Adjustment Assistance

Tuesday, November 03, 2009 | 08:25 am
Workers Affected by Foreign Trade Eligible for Training and Assistance
NASHVILLE – Labor Commissioner Jim Neeley today announced the state of Tennessee has received $12,055,644 in federal funding from the U.S. Department of Labor to enhance the state’s Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) Program.
“These federal funds will provide career retraining and other services and assistance to Tennessee workers to help ensure they have the skills they need to compete for jobs demanding higher skills,” said Governor Phil Bredesen. “This is a big boost for the program and the Tennesseans that it serves.”
Trade Adjustment Assistance is a federally-funded program that provides assistance to workers that have been affected by job loss or had their hours and wages cut due to increased imports or a shift in production to a foreign country. Workers covered under the petition may access a variety of services that include re-employment, retraining, job search allowances, relocation allowances and a health care tax credit.
"I’m very pleased with the increased level of funding we’ve received for this program, which will help level the playing field for those workers affected by increased imports or a shift in production to a foreign country,” said Commissioner Neeley. “The goal of the Trade Act program is to help workers return to suitable employment as quickly as possible and I applaud the U.S. Department of Labor for providing more resources to help Tennesseans reach that goal.”
The U.S. Department of Labor provided the additional funding to enhance Tennessee’s program, which ranks third in the nation in the amount of trade petitions filed. According to the business survey conducted by the U.S. Department of Labor, employment in manufacturing has declined more than 39,000 since September 2008.
Prior to this announcement, Tennessee had received $16,518,878 for the trade assistance program. In the past year, more than 1,500 Tennesseans have participated in TAA job training with an 88 percent completion rate.
TAA is funded by the U.S. Department of Labor but is administered by state governments and state agencies. A petition for TAA funds may be filed by a group of three or more workers, their union, or their designated representative. For more information, contact the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development, or go to www.tn.gov/labor-wfd.
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