CHICAGO – July 20, 2010. Governor Pat Quinn today announced that in less than three months 22,162 people across the state have been hired through the Put Illinois to Work (PIW) employment program.
“We have created more than 22,000 jobs that would not have been possible without Put Illinois to Work,” said Governor Quinn. “The program has helped strengthen and improve communities, provide employees with the skills necessary to build the foundation for a long, productive career and get our youth off the streets and involved in their neighborhoods.”
Through Put Illinois to Work, eligible Illinois residents are placed in subsidized employment positions with participating worksites for up to six months, learning valuable skills and supporting their families. The program, which was launched in April, has helped stimulate Illinois’ ailing economy and develop a healthy workforce by providing meaningful work experience for participants.
Put Illinois to Work is a collaborative effort of the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) and Heartland Human Care Services.
“The success of Put Illinois to Work has been amazing,” said IDHS Secretary Michelle R.B. Saddler. “The state worked really quickly to get the program up and running, and our community partners and employers have really stepped up to help us surpass our goals.”
In addition, under the state’s youth employment program, more than 1,500 unemployed and underemployed Illinois youth between the ages of 16 and 24 are receiving real-world work experience this year. Through the program, youth are placed in subsidized employment in a variety of work settings through September 30. It is expected that a total of 5,000 youth will receive jobs through the program.
“This short-term program will have a long-term impact on the skills and life opportunities for young people,” said DCEO Director Warren Ribley. “By boosting employment of our youth we are positively impacting our economy and developing a stronger workforce for the future.”
Funding for the Put Illinois to Work and youth employment programs is provided through the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families Emergency Contingency Fund, which was created by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. Due to the tremendous success of the PIW program, the IDHS is no longer accepting employer applications. Applications for the youth employment program can be found at IllinoisWorkNet.com/Yes.
It is expected that more than 30,000 Illinois residents will benefit from this program by its completion.