I want to provide an update on how the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting our field, and share a little bit about how our colleagues and NYEC are responding.
Policy and Advocacy
NYEC has organized two letters to congressional leadership so far: one on paid leave for the second legislative package (the so-called CV-2 bill) and one on the need to target resources to young people for the CARES Act (see our summary of the CARES Act, which included $345 million in job-training funding).
Our next letter includes comprehensive recommendations for what needs to be in the next legislative package (CV-4 or “CARES 2”). NYEC convened organizations like YouthBuild USA, the Forum for Youth Investment, the Center for Law and Social Policy, Aspen Institute Opportunity Youth Forum, and the Corps Network to develop a bold set of consensus recommendations for what’s needed to reconnect opportunity youth with education and employment in this time. Please sign onto our letter when it’s released tomorrow (we’ll send an email about it).
We gave feedback to Rep. Bobby Scott’s staff as they developed the Relaunching America’s Workforce Act (RAWA), introduced on Friday. RAWA is a first step toward enacting the opportunity-youth community recommendations. We have heard from Rep. Scott himself and his staff that broad support from organizations that serve those affected by COVID is critical for RAWA to make it into the next legislation package.
We are also lifting up our colleagues’ advocacy efforts. If you are able, call your Member of Congress today in support of Rep. Scott Peters’ letter to House leadership , which calls for a comprehensive approach to meeting the needs of young people experiencing homelessness.
Rashaun has been working with the Campaign for Trauma-Informed Policy and Practice to craft comprehensive recommendations for addressing the expanding mental-health crisis facing young people; look for these recommendations soon.
Executive Branch Advocacy
We worked with the Center on Law and Social Policy on a letter to DOL staff with recommendations on how to support youth-workforce organizations during the pandemic. Sara Hastings with DOL has joined several of NYEC’s COVID response calls.
Practice and Field Building
COVID Response Calls
Nearly 60 folks joined the COVID-19 response workshop with Larry Robbin last Thursday. We have had similarly large turnouts for the general check-in calls and workshops we have held.
Rashaun has done one write-up so far of what we are hearing; we hope to have another up on our blog soon. Please tell us through the form on our webpage what your program is experiencing in this time, and what federal, state, or local policy responses would improve the lives of the young people you serve. We’d especially like to hear what supports, beyond the Paycheck Protection Program, your organization needs as we contribute to the conversation about a nonprofit stimulus proposal .
Our next COVID response call will be next Thursday, May 14 th , at 2pm Eastern time . Martha Ross of the Brookings Institution will join us to talk about what we know, and don’t know, about what the youth labor market will look like post-COVID, and how we can prepare. Join us at https://www.gotomeet.me/NYEC .
All Youth Connecting Convening
Our All Youth Connecting convening will now be held virtually, from 1-4 p.m. Eastern time each day, June 22-25. Please visit the convening webpage to learn more, register, and submit session proposals. We will be using the Whova platform to host the conference. Whova integrates with the Zoom platform with which you are probably familiar. We will be able to bring a strong NYEC flavor to the convening, with highly interactive, discussion-driven sessions; plentiful and varied networking opportunities; and even games.
COVID Response Task Force
In addition to hearing from our members via the form on our webpage and our various calls and webinars, I want our COVID response to be informed in a more systematic way by our members. David Brown (Annie E. Casey Foundation), Mike Davie (Seattle-King County WDB), Kathy Hamilton (Boston PIC), and Ellen Zinkiewicz (Nashville NCAC) have agreed to serve on an informal task force.
#GivingTuesdayNow and Supporting NYEC
NYEC and other nonprofits around the country are participating in #GivingTuesdayNow to raise funds for nonprofits as they respond to COVID-19. Please visit our donation page for more information on giving options. I hope you’ll consider giving to NYEC as we strive to advance our field during this challenging time.