Last week, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti kicked off HIRE LA’s Youth for 2013 and called on L.A. business leaders to provide summer employment and internship opportunities for the young people of our city. The Chamber lauds Mayor Garcetti for making summer youth employment and internship opportunities one of the first priorities of his new administration.
The Chamber and the Office of the Mayor have partnered to sponsor HIRE LA’s Youth since 2005, recognizing the impact it can have on the continued economic prosperity of the L.A. region. Summer jobs and internship opportunities not only provide youth the chance to gain valuable early work experience, local businesses benefit from their investment in a highly motivated and well-trained future workforce.
Forty years ago, a teenager leaving high school — with or without a diploma — could find a job in a local business or factory. But today, with millions of jobs lost and experienced workers scrambling for every available position, young people stand last in line for jobs.
Because early work experiences are more difficult to access today, the Chamber is aggressively supporting a Linked Learning approach in our schools to integrate rigorous academics with career-based learning and real world workplace experiences. Students with access to Linked Learning gain a better understanding of how their high school education leads to their next academic or career step. And Linked Learning helps students to understand the large array of career choices available to them.
HIRE LA’s Youth is a partnership of the Chamber, the Mayor’s Office, the City of Los Angeles and the Los Angeles Workforce Investment Board. During the last eight years, HIRE LA’s Youth has leveraged public and private dollars to support more than 75,000 subsidized and unsubsidized employment and internship opportunities. At the news conference last week, Mayor Garcetti announced a $500,000 contribution from Goldman Sachs & Co. and a $200,000 contribution from JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. to HIRE LA’s Youth. Earlier, Bank of America donated $100,000 and Wells Fargo donated $70,000 to jump start this year’s campaign. Vons, a Safeway Company, is leading the way for employers by hiring 500 students this summer.
Join these businesses and hundreds of others in hiring youth this summer or in providing financial support to subsidize youth employment at public or non-profit enterprises. You can get involved by visiting HIRE LA’s Youth or Pillar.
I encourage you to act now. I can already see the smiles on the faces of the young people who will benefit from your investment and mentorship.
And that’s The Business Perspective.
The Business Perspective is a weekly column by Gary Toebben, President & CEO of the Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce, produced with the input of Public Policy staff.