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Drive-bys: SER’s Road Trip Job Placement StrategyDecember 11, 2012
In the Little Village community of Chicago, as well as the surrounding communities of North Lawndale, East Garfield Park, and Pilsen, drive-bys are rarely thought of as something positive. Yet the job developers of Central States SER’s Healthcare Bridge Program have reinvented the term as they fill vacant certified nursing assistant (CNA) positions at many of the nursing homes and hospitals in Chicago and its suburbs. Central States SER-Jobs for Progress was founded in 1970 with the goal of expanding career opportunities for the Hispanic community in Chicago. Over the past decade the number of participants served has grown considerably, from 500 participants in 2002 to more than 10,000 in 2012. SER’s 115 full-time employees work with a wide range of participants, from former gang-affiliated youth to senior citizens, who are looking to reenter the workforce by gaining skills for careers in health care, transportation, manufacturing, and many other fields. Along with Daley College, one of the City Colleges of Chicago, Central States SER launched its CNA training program in 2007. The program was started with the aim of helping low-skilled, low-income adults gain access to training that leads to viable health care careers and helping local health care employers find quality staff. Central States SER’s Healthcare Bridge Program is the cornerstone of its programmatic work in these communities and, in partnership with Daley College, the program has helped nearly 150 individuals successfully complete a contextualized literacy and numeracy program. Since 2007, these certifications opened the door for graduates to gain admission to a health care–focused occupational training program at one of the City Colleges of Chicago or Triton College and, ultimately, find employment at a health care facility. While Central States SER and its partners were highly successful in training and graduating participants from the CNA program, they still had little success with job placement for some of their students. Despite professional development workshops that included job search techniques, résumé writing, mock interviewing, and providing targeted job leads, many graduates still were not being hired. This high number of unemployed graduates spurred Central States SER to gather labor market information, specifically from the Illinois Department of Employment Security, to check whether CNAs were still in demand. Yet according to the data, there will be a 20.95% increase in demand for nursing aides, orderlies, and attendants between 2008 and 2018. Central States SER and its partners were confounded as to why participants were not getting hired. SER decided to perform an in-depth evaluation of their program to identify where they might have been falling short. A thorough review of case notes revealed that participants were not being proactive about their own job search: they skipped job club meetings, did not respond to job leads, and constantly missed job interviews and appointments with their job developers. Moreover, participants were actually scared of entering the job market. To combat this fear, one of SER’s job developers had an idea: not only did she take a few participants with her directly to potential…
In Wake of Election, Calls for Immigration Reform Grow Louder from Both PartiesNovember 15, 2012
On November 6, Latino voters played a crucial role in the 2012 presidential election, coming out in unprecedented numbers in battleground states such as Florida, Colorado, Virginia, and Nevada to propel President Barack Obama to victory. Many Latinos voted because they care about the state of our economy and the quality of our education and health care systems, among other issues. But the overwhelming support of a second term for Obama is a message from Latinos that they urgently want a federal solution to fix our broken immigration system, and they will back candidates who have committed to pushing this legislation forward.
History Is Made as Voters Say “Yes” to Marriage EqualityNovember 15, 2012
Four years ago, while an electrified Chicago crowd chanted “Yes, we can!” during President Obama’s acceptance speech, many in the LGBT community still had their eyes glued to their televisions awaiting entirely different results. And as those results flooded in, it became all too clear that Republicans weren’t the only ones who had suffered a devastating blow that night—Proposition 8 passed in California, barring same-sex couples from the constitutional right to marry.
NCLR’s Cervical Cancer Prevention Program Takes Top HonorsOctober 30, 2012
Luck is in the air in San Francisco. Not only did the Giants sweep the World Series earlier this week, but NCLR (National Council of La Raza) received an award from the American Public Health Association (APHA) for a cervical cancer prevention program we developed. Thousands of public health professionals are in the Bay area for the week attending the 140th APHA Annual Meeting & Expo, the largest gathering of public health professionals in the world with a focus on current and emerging health science, policy, and practice issues in an effort to prevent disease and promote health.
With Dream of Homeownership Threatened, Candidates’ Silence on Housing Issues Elicits FrustrationOctober 26, 2012
How do you convince somebody to fix a problem when they are seemingly blind to the overwhelming evidence that the problem even exists?
Don’t Let Congress Push Our Future off the (Fiscal) CliffOctober 26, 2012
Yesterday, NCLR released the Latino Kids Data Explorer, a unique resource that combines information from several sources into one easy-to-use tool.
35,000 Signatures, a debate, and 90,000 New Voters: This Week in Social MediaOctober 21, 2012
This week, as voter registration deadlines passed across the country, we tallied up our totals and the results are in: 90,000 new Latinos registered and ready to #Mobilize2Vote!
Is it Time for the Media to Stop Using “Illegal?”October 19, 2012
In the ongoing debate over immigration reform, the topic seems to finally have shifted to the people affected themselves—the over 12 million undocumented people living in the U.S. without papers, their children, and their family and friends.
The Voter Registration Clock is Ticking in Three States TodayOctober 16, 2012
If you live in Nevada, Maryland or New Jersey today is your last chance to register to vote.
The Chavez National Monument Honors the Man and the Latino Workers He ChampionedOctober 09, 2012
In a moving ceremony this week, President Barack Obama designated the home and final resting place of one of the Latino community’s greatest icons, Cesar Chavez, as both a national monument and a national park.
César E. Chávez to be Memorialized with National MonumentOctober 08, 2012
Today the president will unveil the César E. Chávez National Monument in Keene, Calif.
More Jobs, New Laws, and a Debate: This Week in Social MediaOctober 07, 2012
A look back at some of the biggest news stories this week.
Latino Unemployment Drops While Workplace Fatalities Rise in 2011October 05, 2012
For the first time in almost four years, national unemployment dropped below 8 percent to 7.8 percent in September. Although this is good news for all Americans, the outlook for Hispanic workers is much more mixed.
We’re Tweeting the Presidential Debate This Week!October 01, 2012
The first of three presidential debates is this Wednesday in Denver. We're joining several other groups for a tweet chat during the debate. Join our conversation on Twitter using #BeLatino.
Did Romney Miss an Opportunity to Set Himself Apart on Housing?September 27, 2012
Last week, Univision hosted a Spanish-language forum with Governor Mitt Romney on Wednesday and President Obama on Thursday. The presidential candidates spoke to Latino families about immigration, jobs, and national security.
Five Ways School Leaders Can Improve Achievement Among Latino StudentsSeptember 26, 2012
School leaders and teachers are both integral to the success of the schools they run, but the leaders' contributions to student success are slightly different than those of the teachers they manage.
Will Your State Be Punished for Taking Foreclosures to Court?September 24, 2012
In the near future, nearly half of the United States could experience increased mortgage fees.
Register in September….September 24, 2012
For National Voter Registration Day today, we’re joining hundreds of activists and organizations across the country to register as many new voters as possible.
An Open Letter to the Presidential CandidatesSeptember 21, 2012
A decent home for everyone is core to the American promise of opportunity, a source of security and pride.