$1.6 million Available for Proposals to Invigorate Maine’s Workforce System

Unemployment at a Historical High

Augusta, Maine— May 8, 2020 — With a combined $1.6 million in funds, the Central Western Maine Workforce Development Board (CWMWDB) seeks proposals to assist with providing career services and training for adult and youth unemployed, dislocated and incumbent workers and barriered populations in crucially needed in High Wage In In Demand areas such as Healthcare.

Maine unemployment is at an all-time high Maine unemployment is at an all-time high, with 72,929 in continued claims as of April 25, 2020 (CWRI) and over 100,000 initial claims filed. Before Covid-19,  the highest number of continued claims in recent decades was 29,904. A sudden jump in unemployment that surpasses all time economic nightmares by almost 2.5 times is certainly surprising. It’s an unexpected systemic shock that has led to large workforce uncertainty.

Reinventing a career in the time of coronavirus  In the Harvard Business Review, Herminia Ibarra writes in her essay “Reinventing your career in the time of coronavirus”  that in these uncertain times  “people are rethinking their careers” (Ibarra, HBR, 2020). Such career rethinking by the unemployed may benefit Maine as workers choose to train for crucially needed professions.  With Maine already facing workforce shortages due to an aging labor force, assisting the unemployed to find or prepare for High Wage In Demand Jobs is more important than ever. Focusing career pathways and training in Industry Sectors such as Healthcare, Information Technology, Manufacturing and Construction will help workers achieve credentials and self-sufficient wages. Employers receive qualified employees and assistance with training programs.

About CWMWDB and its programs Appointed by county commissioners through a Maine Department of Labor process, the CWMWDB members are private citizens who oversees certain Workforce Innovation & Opportunity Act (WIOA) Title 1B funding related to employment and training of the unemployed or dislocated workers. The CWMWDB creates the Workforce Strategic Plan for the five-county region, certifies the operation of the One Stop system and organizes the infrastructure cost sharing agreements among 15 more collaborative partners.

CWMWDB’s career and employment training assistance are just some of the services that have always been available to local qualified unemployed job seekers through the comprehensive Maine Department of Labor workforce system. Likewise, there also are many existing employer services including funding for on-the-job-training and customized training programs that have always been available to local business. Visit cwmwdb.org or email us at info@cwmwdb.org

More Funding Details  The funds will be available to experienced and innovative service providers to be a One-Stop Operator and to provide WIOA Adult & Dislocated Worker Program Services. Funds will also be available for WIOA Youth Program Services. The service area is Androscoggin, Kennebec, Oxford, Franklin, and Somerset counties, Maine. Details are at cwmwdb.org from May 11, 2020 until the deadline June 22, 2020.


Ibarra, H. (2020, Apr 27). Reinventing your career in the time of coronavirus. The Harvard Business Review online. Retrieved https://hbr.org/2020/04/reinventing-your-career-in-the-time-of-coronavirus

Center for Workforce Research and Information (CWRI) (2020, Apr 25) Unemployment insurance program, Chart 1.Retrieved https://www.maine.gov/labor/cwri/ui.html#interactive