New York Dems Applaud President Obama’s New Proposals to Help Unemployed New Yorkers

Proposals will increase access to education, training and financial aid

(NEW YORK, NY)  – Today, President Obama announced new proposals that will help more unemployed workers attend community college and allow workers to continue receiving unemployment benefits while they are enrolled in college and/or training programs.  New York State Democratic Committee Chair June O’Neill, issued the following statement on the President’s program:

“Today President Obama announced new plans to give thousands of unemployed Americans in New York and around the country an extra hand by empowering them to learn new skills and get ahead in their careers.  The Obama Administration will work with our state’s leaders to make sure that New Yorkers don’t have to choose between furthering their education and staying afloat.

Under the President’s program, New Yorkers who have lost their jobs will now be eligible to receive federal financial aid – so they can stay enrolled in school despite losing their incomes – or have the opportunity to go back to school without losing their unemployment benefits. And the Federal Pell Grant program will soon provide up to $5,350 for educational costs at community colleges, colleges and universities, and many trade and technical schools.

We know that someone who doesn’t have a college degree is more than twice as likely to be unemployed as someone who does.  The Obama Administration’s plans to expand educational opportunities will help unemployed New Yorkers learn the skills they need to not just get through these hard times, but to be more competitive once our economy recovers.

President Obama thinks it’s important to help workers here in New York and across the nation gain access to higher education, acquire more skills and become more competitive.  His program will also make sure that a period of unemployment is no longer just a time to look for a new job, but a time to prepare for a better job. The President’s proposals, coupled with Governor Paterson’s success in the state to reduce spending and create new job opportunities for New Yorkers, will help build a foundation for strong economic growth.”

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