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Beyer introduces bill to improve access to workforce training

Don BeyerRep. Don Beyer (D-VA) has introduced the Pre-apprenticeship Promotion Act, legislation that would strengthen the Health Profession Opportunity Grants program by ensuring pre-apprenticeships and apprenticeships are considered in the training process.

The bill aims to make HPOG more responsive to local workforce needs, while opening additional health care industry opportunities for underserved communities.

“Too many Americans are struggling to make ends meet and too many health care jobs continue to go vacant,” said Beyer. “This bill helps fill that glaring gap by ensuring ladders to opportunity extend to those who need them the most. I look forward to taking up the Pre-apprenticeship Promotion Act in the Ways and Means Committee and I urge my colleagues to support it.”

HPOG is a grant program established under the Affordable Care Act. It provides education and training to Temporary Assistance for Needy Families recipients, veterans and people with disabilities in the health care sector, giving access to high-paying, high-demand careers. It also helps the health care industry by assisting employers in finding trained and qualified staff to provide the care that patients need.

Apprenticeships are proven methods in preparing workers to enter high-skill industries. However, barriers to entry for those programs remain. This bill aims to ensure quality pre-apprenticeships exist for potential enrollees in HPOG applicants in order to prepare diverse and skilled workers for apprenticeships, and ultimately, a stable middle-class career.