Workforce Investment

The federal government invests around $4 billion per year to maintain a public workforce development system that provides job search and training-related services to laid-off workers, disadvantaged adults, young people, Native Americans, formerly incarcerated people and other people. That system, established by the 1998 Workforce Investment Act, functions primarily through a network of about 3,000 One-Stop Career Centers staffed by public employees.

These operations are overseen by local Workforce Investment Boards, which are made up of business leaders (by law, a majority of each board), labor union representatives (at least two per board), educators, local government officials and others from diverse segments of the community.

The Workforce Investment Act programs for adults, dislocated workers and youth has a network of more than 2,500 American Job Centers that served nearly 23 million persons in 2015-16. The AFL-CIO Working for America Institute works with local labor board members, state Employment Security agencies, national and state policy organizations and members of Congress to ensure the voices of workers are heard in job search assistance, career counseling and skill training services.

Find Your Local One-Stop Career Center from the U.S. Department of Labor