Identifies the challenges that older workers face, describes how the public workforce system serves these individuals, and makes policy, program, and research recommendations to better serve this population.

"This report identifies the challenges that older workers face, describes how the U.S. public workforce system serves these individuals, and makes policy, program, and research recommendations aimed at improving the effectiveness of the U.S. public workforce system in serving this population. The report is structured as follows. Section one presents background research on older adults and employment, identifies the research questions, and describes the research methodology. Section two describes the challenges that older workers face in maintaining employment or in becoming reemployed after losing a job. Section three defines and describes the current U.S. public workforce system and how it serves older workers. Section four presents a summary of promising practices that have been identified by national experts and practitioners in the field and that national, state, and local public and nonprofit agencies and organizations have adopted to assist older workers in finding and keeping a job. Finally, section five presents policy, program, and research recommendations drawing upon interviews with national experts, including federal, state, and local workforce policymakers and practitioners" (p.2). (Abstractor: Author)

Full publication title: The Public Workforce System: Serving Older Job Seekers and the Disability Implications of an Aging Workforce


Major Findings & Recommendations

Policy and/or Legislative Recommendations • "Mandate that the needs of older workers be addressed by WIBs in a designated section of their local plans" (p.31). • "Modify the WIA Performance Measures to Better Ensure Older Worker Access to Intensive and Training Services" (p.32). • "Authorize the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration to establish a National Technical Assistance and Knowledge Exchange Center with a Network of Regional Satellite Centers at established universities across the nation" (p.33). • "Prioritize funding directions to better align current workforce investment (including WIA, SCSEP, Vocational Rehabilitation, and other programs) training and service offerings for older job seekers based on existing evidence about the types of training services and packages that increase their employment" (p.33). • "Realign policy directions in the public workforce system around economic security for older workers and workers with disabilities as a long-term goal for the system, not just the delivery of employment, training, and education programs" (p.34). Technical Assistance and Training Recommendations • "Provide more dedicated and comprehensive training to One-Stop staff in serving older workers, including those with disabilities, with an emphasis on forging ties to the national aging network" (p.35). • "Conduct an assessment of the extent and effectiveness of accommodations in the public workforce investment system, using the results to inform and provide dedicated technical assistance and training to One-Stops" (p.36). (Abstractor: Author)