EPA Brownfields Job Training Grant Will Train Workers in East Point, Georgia
EPA Workforce Development Grants Transform Lives and Land Across the Country
ATLANTA (March 18, 2021) — Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) held a press event announcing the selection of the city of East Point, Georgia for a $132,400 Environmental Workforce Development and Job Training (EWDJT) grant. This is one of 18 grant recipients selected to share $3.3 million to operate environmental job training programs for local citizens across the country. Today’s press event featured the Acting Regional Administrator for EPA’s Southeast region, John Blevins, the mayor of East Point, Ga., Mayor Deana Holiday Ingraham, and Ms. Louise Bryant with Clayton State University.
This EWDJT grant will be used by the city of East Point to train up to 72 people in important skills needed to work in the environmental remediation field and to assist local economic development. The city is targeting young adults ages 17 to 24 that reside in East Point. This grant program advances environmental justice by providing an opportunity for residents historically impacted by brownfield sites to gain training and employment as a result of cleanup activities taking place in their communities.
“EPA's job training grants help individuals gain marketable skills necessary to gain full-time employment in the environmental field and help boost the East Point economy,” said EPA Acting Region 4 Administrator John Blevins. “EPA is proud to provide funding for organizations that are working to create a skilled workforce in communities where EPA brownfields assessment and cleanup activities are taking place.”
“I am thrilled to see this federal funding flow to the City of East Point to equip young, hardworking Georgians with the job skills they need to gain employment while advancing environmental justice efforts and bolstering our local economies,” said Senator Raphael Warnock. “This is the future of job development in Georgia, and I’ll keep fighting to bring these vital investments to our state.”
“We are excited that the EPA has selected East Point for this grant to pave the way for more workforce development, jobs and livable wages opportunities in our great City,” said Mayor Deana Holiday Ingraham. “This is a wonderful opportunity to build a coalition with key stakeholders and expose students to careers in the environmental field while engaging them in work geared towards improving the environment and quality of life for our community.”
"The Continuing and Professional Education (CaPE) Department of Clayton State University (CSU) is proud to partner with the EPA with the Job Training grant to service the underrepresented youth residing in East Point,” said Clayton State University Continuing and Professional Education Executive Director Dr. Reginald H. Turner. “CSU has been a part of the Workforce Development ecosystem since 1950. And we look forward to continuing the legacy of supporting Talent Development to help address pressing and complex challenges with the city of East Point and the other collaborative partners."
The city plans to train 72 students and place at least 44 in environmental jobs. The curriculum for the program includes a 40-hour HAZWOPER training, fundamentals for implementing best management practices on construction sites and accurately inspecting land disturbance areas for compliance with state erosion and sedimentation laws, Distribution Systems Operation and Maintenance, and Professional Development. Students who complete the training will earn up to three state and one federal certifications. Key partners include Clayton State University, Wholesome Wave Georgia, Greening Youth Foundation, Arden’s Garden, Atlanta Community Food Bank, Cardno, Inc., City of College Park Department of Public Works, SA Recycling, LLC, Tri-Cities High School, and Walmart Realty.
EPA's Environmental Workforce Development and Job Training program helps put people to work by building a skilled workforce across the country. The program awards competitive grants to cities, nonprofit organizations and other eligible entities to recruit, train and place unemployed and underemployed individuals. Individuals completing the training have often overcome a variety of barriers to employment. Many are from low-income neighborhoods. The training programs also serve dislocated workers who have lost their jobs as a result of manufacturing plant closures or other circumstances.
Since 1998, when the EWDJT grant program started, more than 335 grants have been awarded. Over 18,500 individuals have completed training, and of those, more than 13,700 individuals have been placed in full-time employment earning an average starting wage of over $14 an hour. Rather than filling local jobs with contractors from distant cities, EPA created its environmental job training program to offer residents of communities historically affected by environmental pollution, economic disinvestment, and brownfields an opportunity to gain the skills and certifications needed to secure local environmental work in their communities. In Region 4, over the last 11 years, 628 individuals have completed training and over 450 of them have been placed in environmental jobs.
A brownfield is a property for which the expansion, redevelopment, or reuse may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant. There are an estimated 450,000 abandoned and contaminated waste sites in America. When brownfields are addressed, nearby property values within a one-mile radius can increase 5 to 15.2 percent according to an independent study.
For more information on the City of East Point Brownfields EWDJT grant recipient, please visit: https://cfpub.epa.gov/bf_factsheets/gfs/index.cfm?xpg_id=11786&display_type=HTMLStandard
For more information on the selected 2021 Brownfields EWDJT grant recipients, including past grantees, please visit: https://cfpub.epa.gov/bf_factsheets/index.cfm?grant_announcement_year=2021&grant_type_id=1003
For more information on this, and other types of Brownfields grants, please visit: https://www.epa.gov/brownfields/environmental-workforce-development-and-job-training-ewdjt-grants