U.S. Sen. Kay R. Hagan (D—N.C.) on Friday, Jan. 27, launched her North Carolina Back to Work Jobs Tour to determine the most effective ways to get North Carolinians back to work right now.
Hagan began the tour in Scotland County, where unemployment stands at 16.6 percent—the highest of any county in North Carolina. She toured Service Thread Manufacturing, a textile company that employs approximately 75 people and manufactures industrial yarns and sewing threads, converted multifilament yarns and engineered specialty textile products.
“Jobs are my No. one priority,” said Hagan. “Everywhere I go in our state, unemployment is the issue I hear about from North Carolinians. I am launching my North Carolina Back to Work Jobs Tour to focus on action and ideas that will get unemployed North Carolinians back on the job as quickly as possible. With unemployment at almost 10 percent in our state, and as high as 16.6 percent in Scotland County, we don’t have a minute to waste in rolling up our sleeves to find commonsense, bipartisan solutions to get employment back on track.”
The North Carolina Back to Work Jobs Tour included stops in communities across North Carolina. Hagan met with small business owners, workers, veterans, manufacturers, workforce development officers, community college administrators and others to gain input and feedback about concrete steps that can put people back to work right now. The tour explored many aspects of the unemployment crisis, including a strong emphasis on job training and job readiness.
“With North Carolina’s outstanding community colleges and workforce training centers, it is unacceptable that middle-class families are struggling to make ends meet while employers are struggling to fill open jobs.," Hagain said. "I want to continue bringing together all the stakeholders—business owners, workforce training administrators, unemployed workers and veterans—so that we can get people back on the job. I want to connect job seekers and employers to the many resources and incentives of which they may not be aware.”
Hagan’s AMERICA Works Act encourages national industries—like construction, automotive and aerospace—to come together and agree on the skill sets necessary for employees. When the industries have agreed upon standards, curricula will be developed for training programs at community colleges that will offer industry-recognized credentials. When workers have earned an industry-recognized credential, they will be qualified for employment in any state. For more about the AMERICA Works Act, please click here.