Last week the New York Senate Democratic Policy Group released a white paper entitled Upstate Left Behind: Job Loss, Policy Challenges, and a New Path to Create Jobs Across New York State. The white paper discusses 47 policy initiatives, including improved workforce data, which are intended to bring jobs to Upstate New York and decrease the region’s economic stagnation.
The white paper suggests that by strengthening workforce data, New York can connect residents with the right job training programs, and increase job readiness. That, in turn, would create employment, as it did in Mississippi, where the state’s longitudinal data system provided information that helped attract a Yokohama Tire Corporation manufacturing plant.
WDQC’s 2014 Mastering the Blueprint report is cited in the white paper, because it revealed that the state failed to achieve any of our 13 Blueprint elements for strong data systems. It also influenced development of the policy recommendations.
WDQC applauds New York State legislators for highlighting workforce data as an important strategy for economic growth, and we look forward to being a resource as policy proposals advance. With better information, workers can pick training programs that give them in-demand skills, businesses can hire qualified workers to help them succeed, and state leaders can direct resources to workforce programs that give people real opportunity and support New York’s economy.
Other recommendations from the white paper include expanding job training programs, facilitating college credit for career technical education courses, and developing a state service corps.
The white paper is not the only action New York is taking towards improving data. Recently, representatives from New York attended the Multistate Education and Workforce Data: Improving Policy and Program Outcomes meeting, hosted in cooperation between WDQC, Western Interstate Commission on Higher Education (WICHE), and the New York Association of Training and Employment Professionals (NYATEP). During the meeting, representatives from the state’s public college systems discussed current research efforts as well as the potential benefits of multi-state data.