Hiring low income could see benefits

Published 9:47 pm Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Employers who chose to hire low-income workers may now get reimbursement for hiring these individuals.

Alabama Department of Industrial Relations Director Tom Surtees and Alabama Department of Human Resources Commissioner Nancy Buckner are urging Alabama’s employers to take advantage of the program.

Employers who hire individuals who are part of DHR’s Family Assistance Program could be eligible for reimbursement of 100 percent of gross wages paid to each qualifying individual for up to six months.

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“I understand that hiring is tough these days,” Surtees said. “But I would like to encourage prospective employers to consider these applicants when making their hiring decisions. Not only will the employers benefit by having his or her expenses recompensed, but providing a seriously disadvantaged person with a job to help them care for their family is an added bonus to our economy.”

Employers should have a large pool of potential employees to choose from with about 43,330 Alabamians currently receiving financial assistance through the Family Assistance Program.

In fact, some 10,000 are adults who are required to participate in the JOBS Program and may be eligible to work.

Of those, more than 50 percent are in the 20-29 age group, 41 percent have completed the 12th grade and 13 percent have more than a 12th grade education.

Those who participate in the JOBS program may also receive assistance in purchasing uniforms or paying for childcare and transportation expenses.

“Many of the participants in our JOBS program are anxious to get to work, utilize their skills and, in some cases, learn new skills,” said. Nancy Buckner. “This is a great opportunity for these workers to prove their value as an employee and to also help make a better life for their families.

The program will be available through Sept. 30, 2010.

Employers interested should contact their county DHR office or their local Career Center.

Low-income residents who think they may be eligible can visit their local Career Center for job finding assistance or log on to www.joblink.alabama.gov to see available position.