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Bringing Community Voice to the Forefront

Equity, childcare services, round-the-clock public transportation, and our neighborhoods have historically not been brought up in the discussion surrounding clean economy careers, yet they are integral to the very same workforce that inhabits the clean economy sector. Bringing these discussions to the forefront of budding initiatives and policies is crucial to ensure that community members are properly equipped to meet workforce demands as they shift to meet state climate goals. Valley Vision is working on behalf of these goals through partnering on high road workforce training initiatives, as well as serving as the Regional Convenor for the Community Economic Resilience Fund program in the Sacramento Region, which includes Colusa, El Dorado, Nevada, Placer, Sacramento, Sutter, Yolo, and Yuba counties. 

To facilitate these discussions, Valley Vision partnered with The Dorsey Group, a diversity, equity, and inclusion consulting firm, to engage in honest conversations around the challenges and barriers community members face in accessing clean economy careers. Clean economy careers are future focused, green-oriented careers with high wages and benefits. Dubbed the Community, First! Conversation Series, Valley Vision held a series of in-person events in Sacramento, Yolo, and Placer counties to bring community voice to the forefront of data used to inform the creation of inclusive career pathways into high quality, Clean Economy careers. Designed by and for the community.

The Community, First! Conversation Series took place in Sacramento, Woodland, and Placer county and centered around one question: What do our communities need to succeed in the race to a carbon neutral economy? Each respective county shared the pressing needs of their communities, however, there were four central themes consistent across each discussion: 

  • Expand K-12 clean economy career exploration, education, and training to introduce these opportunities earlier.
  • Expand opportunities to explore clean economy careers and receive appropriate level of skills training at adult education to increase entry points for refugees, immigrants, and those who have faced barriers in traditional education settings.
  • Training opportunities need to be known, easily accessible, and in the neighborhoods that need them the most.
  • Community members are looking for opportunities to get involved and stay engaged in the planning, design and delivery of training in this lucrative area.

These themes will be some of many to be discussed at our upcoming Climate, Justice, and Jobs Summit. Hear from community members themselves on these topics and more on February 13th, 2023 from 9:00AM – 11:00AM as we integrate grassroots-level issues with an overarching mission to fund planning and implementation efforts to help communities advance the transition to a carbon-neutral economy through initiatives like our region’s Community Economic Resilience Fund efforts. 

For more information on the Community Economic Resilience Fund, visit our webpage here.

The Community, First! Conversation Series is part of the California Workforce Development Board’s High Road Construction Careers, which is funded through SB1, a statewide initiative that puts dollars to work to advance careers in the building and construction trades as a reliable pathway to the middle class for disadvantaged Californians via multi-craft pre-apprenticeship training.

Thank you to our generous sponsor for their support and commitment to creating inclusive pipelines and equal access to clean jobs.