Labor Secretary Announces Grant to Help Laid-off Grocery Wholesale Workers

WASHINGTON - U.S. Secretary of Labor Elaine L. Chao yesterday announced a National Emergency Grant of $388,128 to help about 50 workers who were laid off from C&S Wholesale Grocers, Inc. in Portland, Maine.

"This administration is committed to providing help to workers who are transitioning," Chao said. "This grant will enable workers to receive beneficial services including assessment, career planning, employment development, skills training, on-the-job training, and supportive services such as child care and transportation assistance."

Workers lost their jobs after C&S closed its Portland facility last month. Jobs affected by the closure include all positions related to grocery wholesale and the distribution labor force, among others.

The Maine Department of Labor, Bureau of Employment Services is the grantee for the project. The project operator, Coastal Counties Workforce Board, will administer services through the Portland Career Center. Other project services will include individual counseling, entrepreneurial training, job readiness training, and adult education.

National Emergency Grants are part of the secretary's discretionary fund. A grant is awarded after a state submits a request and the grant guidelines have been met.
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