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Middle-Skill Level Job Openings Set To Increase Exponentially In Next Ten Years

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The Indiana Skills2Compete Coalition released a report yesterday that finds a growing number of unfilled ‘middle skills’ jobs, and concludes that Indiana’s Skills Gap is an adult problem that will require adult solutions.

Jessica Fraser, program manager and co-chair of the coalition, says in this report they define a middle skills job as a job  that requires training, that is more than a high school diploma, but less than a four year degree.

Mostly, it is one-year credentials or two-year associate degrees.

She also mentions that this is a update to a report they rolled out in 2010.

“In the ten-year projection from this report, we found that there were 63,000 more middle-skills job than in the projection we did three years ago,” Fraser says. “This means more opportunity in the middle-skills job market.”

According to Fraser, middle-skills jobs mean more than that for Hoosiers.

In the short term, the jobs don’t require four-year college education, which makes people get re-trained relatively quickly and able to make a family-sustaining wage if they lost their jobs.

“There are jobs that are required to take place here in Indiana,” Fraser says, “Not only that, but they are high wage jobs, and I think that’s the key takeaway for Hoosiers in the long term.”

Despite all these benefits middle skills job brings to Hoosiers job market, the report finds that the largest and fastest-growing segment of Indiana’s skills gap comes from middle-skill jobs.

Fraser says that 55 percent of the jobs in 2012 were classified as middle-skill, but only 47 percent of people in Indiana had the skills for those jobs.

“Based on a ten-year projection, 550,000 job openings will be coming up as middle-skill. We simply won’t have nearly enough workers to fill those positions,” Fraser says.

To fill the gap, the Coalition has selected four policy priorities: allow part-time students greater access to state financial aid, continue differentiation of services for students in adult basic education, maximize on-the-job training opportunities and promote the statewide establishment of prior learning assessments.

Daily Local News – September 24, 2013

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The Indiana Skills2Compete Coalition released a report yesterday that finds a growing number of unfilled ‘middle skills’ jobs; A tool for monitoring the local impact of global climate change has recently been given an assurance of funding for at least the next few years; The Local Council of Women will hold a discussion on communicable diseases and immunizations at the Monroe County Public Library; Local food charity Mother’s Hubbard’s Cupboard announced a significant expansion of services and programs for people since its movement in June to a new facility at 1100 West Allen Street.

FEATURE
Wimbush on DEMA
Bev Smith and Eric Love of WFHB’s Bring it On! speak with the new Vice President for IU’s Office of Diversity Equity and Multicultural Affairs James C Wimbush about his new position and the goals he has planned for DEMA, for today’s WFHB feature exclusive.

INS AND OUTS OF MONEY
Experts recommend an emergency savings fund that reflects 3-6 months of your annual household salary. Ashley and Sarah interview local community members about whether or not they have an emergency fund, how they have set it up, and real life examples of emergency expenses, on the Ins and Outs of Money, our weekly segment providing economic education to keep your budget balanced, and connecting you to community resources that help you keep your finances flourishing.

CREDITS
Anchors: Shayne Laughter, Alycin Bektesh
Today’s headlines were written by David Murphy and Yvonne Cheng, and Yin Yuan
Today’s feature was produced by Harrison Wagner, courtesy of Bring it On!
The Ins and Outs of Money is produced by Dan Withered, in partnership with the Monroe County Public Library and the Monroe County United Way
Our engineer is Harrison Wagner
Executive Producer is Alycin Bektesh

Report Shows Recovery Has Not Benefited Most Hoosiers

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A recently released report into income and poverty in Indiana has concluded that the continuing recovery from the great recovery has not benefitted most Hoosiers. The report, entitled ‘No Progress’, from the Indiana Institute for Working Families, there has been no significant change in the poverty rate for the state, since the recession supposedly ended last year, and average incomes have actually continued their decade long decline. The decline in wages and the increase in poverty over the last decade in Indiana has surpassed both that of the country as a whole and that of our neighboring states.

Furthermore, the state unemployment rate has been above the national average for one full year. Indiana’s high unemployment rate is at least partly attributed to the continuing barriers in the way of people attaining post-secondary educational training. Obstacles to educational attainment continues to be a barrier to high-wage growth.

The Daily Local News spoke to Derek Thomas, Senior Policy Analyst with the Institute. He first talked about poverty in Indiana.”Since 2000, Indiana saw a 58.7 percent increase, that’s the fifth largest in the U.S. In 2007, the poverty rate was 12.3 percent.”Currently, fifteen point six percent of Hoosiers live in poverty. It is much worse for younger residents, with over twenty-two percent of all state children living in poverty, and twenty-seven point two of children under five years of age in poverty.

The study next looked at income in the state. It found that Median Household Income in Indiana is over six percent below what it was when the recession began in 2008. The decline in income since the year 2000 has been the fourth largest in the country, similarly the worst among our neighbors except for Michigan.

This poverty and low income is exacerbated by the relatively low educational levels of Hoosiers. And, the percent of state adults with secondary and post-secondary degrees has not improved significantly over the last year. The institute has suggest several policy measures that could quickly alleviate some of these social-economic problems.

“First of all, we recommend the incretin the earn and income tax credit. It’s a federal credit for low to moderate working family. The credit reduces the tax burden. So, it offsets pay roll and income taxes. It’s also refundable, meaning if the credit exceeds the tax, the credit will given it back to the family.”

The second recommendation was for Indiana to enact a $25,000 tax floor, where a family of four earning less than this amount would not be charge income tax. Currently, Indiana is one of only 15 states that tax people below the federal poverty level of 23 thousand for a family of four and 11 thousand for an individual. The third recommendation is for the state to address the so-called cliff effect of work support programs, which Thomas explains for us, using the example of Indianapolis.

“In Marion County, a single-parent of two children, for example, post from 15 dollars per hour that parent losses about more than 8,000 dollars in childcare benefits. In this single parent family raises two children, childcare is important. Works program, means that you are only eligible for childcare if you are working. But what happens is that once you reach the certain address hold, the top level of eligibility lose it all.”

Consequently, employees would be hesitant to seek such an modest pay increase which creates a so-called poverty trap, impeding people’s socio-economic upward mobility. The report also recommends an increase in the minimum wage and indexing it to the cost of living index, and making it easier for Hoosiers to access higher education institutions and staying there until completion of their program.

Thomas concludes saying state policy makers should pursue these remedies.”We are optimistic that the message that self-deficiency is something that everyone embraces.”

Almost half of Hoosier children are low income, defined as below 200% of the official national poverty threshold. These poverty rates are the fifth worst in the nation and worse than all neighboring states except for Michigan, the home of bankrupt Detroit. The full report can be viewed on-line at: www.incap.org/2013povertyday.

Daily Local News – September 23, 2013

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A report released today entitled “No Progress” from the Indiana Institute for Working Families shows there has been no significant change in the poverty rate for the state; A law that requires increased reporting from Bloomington’s pawn shops passed the City Council September 18th; The Ivy Tech John Waldron Arts Center is making a call for submissions for the 2014 season; IU Health Bloomington will offer a free child car seat safety check this Thursday, September 26th.

FEATURE
Indiana Sierra Club on Carbon Limits for Coal Plants
Under rules announced last week by the Environmental Protection Agency, new power plants will be limited in how much carbon they can emit into the atmosphere. The new rule is expected to most dramatically affect coal-fired plants, which will be forced to capture at least some of the carbon they release. Both supporters and detractors of the rules say they will make it more difficult to build new, financially viable coal plants. The Hoosier Chapter of the Sierra Club has often brought attention to the environmental hazards of coal power. Assistant News Director Joe Crawford spoke with Jody Perras, from the Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal Campaign, about the potential effects of the rules for today’s WFHB feature exclusive.

ACTIVATE
Caleb Young, music director for the Indiana Youth Musicians, talks about the organization, how it benefits both the youth involved and the wider Bloomington and Monroe County community.

CREDITS
Anchors: Maria McKinley, Doug Storm
Today’s headlines were written by David Murphy and Chris Martin
Along with Joe Crawford for CATSweek, in partnership with Community Access Television Services
Our feature was produced by Joe Crawford
Activate! was produced by Jennifer Whitaker and Dan Withered
Our engineers are Chris Martin and Lauren Glapa
Executive producer is Alycin Bektesh

Daily Local News – September 20, 2013

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A Bloomington protest against the Keystone XL pipeline is scheduled for 9am tomorrow morning; In a recent statement representing campus laborers,  Peter Kaczmarczyk of the CWA Local 4730 describes his outrage at Indiana University’s decision to lay off and relocate 50 workers from the physical plant department and cut the hours of many others; The 2013 Distinguished Asian Pacific American Alumni Award will be awarded posthumously to the late Sophia Travis, former president of the Monroe County council and IU’s Asian Alumni Association; A meeting September 12th of the Monroe County Solid Waste Management District’s Board of Directors was partly spent addressing a problem of members not attending meetings.

FEATURE
Two Months of Sexploration
Sexploration at IU is a university-led event that gathers student and community organizations to promote a sex-positive attitude and provide an educational experience for students about sexual orientation and gender expression on a personal and cultural level. This is the sixth year the IU Health Center has organized Sexploration events. Previously, Sexploration at IU has lasted one week. This year’s events have been expanded to two months to make more programs available to students throughout the semester. WFHB News Reporter Nash Hott spoke with Patrick Nagal, the chair of Sexploration 2013 and a health educator at the IU Health Center for today’s WFHB News Feature.

VOLUNTEER CONNECTION
Local organizations scout the listening area for service help on Volunteer Connection, linking YOU to current volunteer opportunities in our community.

CREDITS
Anchors: Helen Harrell, Roscoe Medlock
Today’s headlines were written by Allison Schroeder and Lauren Glapa
Along with Joe Crawford for CATSweek, a partnership with Community Access Television Services
Our feature was produced by Nash Hott
Volunteer Connection is produced by Dan Withered in partnership with the city of Bloomington Volunteer Network.
Executive producer is Alycin Bektesh

“Jobs For Hoosiers” Bill Requires Unemployed To Meet With WorkOne Counselors After Fourth Week Of Benefits

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Hoosiers getting unemployment insurance will face new requirements thanks in part to the “Jobs For Hoosiers” bill recently signed into effect by Governor Mike Pence.

This bill affects those who have recently filed for unemployment benefits.

In their fourth week of unemployment, the bill requires them to go to a local WorkOne center for a review of their work search record and an orientation to WorkOne services.

We spoke to the Department of Workforce Development spokesperson Joe Frank about what kind of free services WorkOne offers and how they will benefit unemployed Hoosiers.

“We offer tons of free services like resume assistance, interview coaching, and career counselors,” Frank says, “We even have computer classes that can increase your skill level in Microsoft Word and Office so you’re ready to be employed as quickly as possible.”

Frank says these benefits aren’t just for the unemployed.

The DWD actually works with Indiana businesses to find out what kind of employee they are looking to hire.

This helps them match up anyone looking for a job to a business that fits their skills.

This isn’t only offered to the unemployed and anyone looking to find a better job in their career field can utilize these programs as well.

Frank explains how a national effort to lower unemployment spurred this local act.

“When the federal government re-authorized benefits after the 26th week of unemployment last year, they mandated that folks come into the WorkOne centers to take a look at their work search,” Frank says, “We really found out that it was such a benefit to people. We heard a lot people say they didn’t know all the free services we offered and wish they had known sooner. This is really aimed at getting Hoosiers back to work as soon as possible.”

Those who qualify for these changes can go to www.in.gov/dwd and see what program best fits them.

 

By Casey Kuhn

Daily Local News – September 19, 2013

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The Tocqueville Program at Indiana University Bloomington will kick off the fall 2013 series tomorrow; The Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce  will hold an  Education Forum with Indiana Superintendent Glenda Ritz in Bloomington on October 1st; On Monday the Richland Bean Blossom School Corporation approved a field trip to Germany, despite concerns from some Board members; South Central Indiana’s late summer dry spell is coming to an end today and tomorrow with rain showers already soaking Bloomington this afternoon and the possibility of severe thunderstorms tomorrow; Tomorrow the IU men’s and women’s cross country team is hosting the Intercollegiate Cross Country Meet starting at 3:30 pm

FEATURE
Farm Bill Vote Goes to House: How it May Effect the Hungry
The Senate passed a version of the Farm Bill earlier this summer, but the House of Representatives splits the bill into two sections before their vote. The house was predicted to vote on an amendment that would cut forty billion dollars to food assistance programs today. WFHB news director Alycin Bektesh looks in to how these cuts would effect indiana’s hungry, for today’s daily local news feature exclusive.

VOICES IN THE STREET
It’s been more than a year since President Obama claimed the use of chemical weapons would be a red line in the Syrian conflict.  And recently Syrian President Assad took Secretary of State John Kerry up on his suggestion that a relinquishing and a full inventory of their chemical weapon stockpiles would be a way out of using military force.  How the Syrian conflict resolves itself is still yet to be seen, so Voices in the Street asked your friends and neighbors how the US should deal with this and if military force is justified.

CREDITS
Today’s headlines were written by Yin Yuan, Mike Glab, and Jalisa Ransom,
Along with Joe Crawford for CATSweek, in partnership with community access televisions services
Voices in the Street was produced by Kelly Wherley, with correspondent maddie Glen
Our broadcast engineer is Sarah Hettrick
Our theme music is provided by the Impossible Shapes
The Executive Producer is Alycin Bektesh

Indiana Superintendent Glendta Ritz to Speak at an Education Forum In Bloomington

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The Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce will hold an Education Forum with Indiana Superintendent Glenda Ritz in Bloomington on October 1st.

The Chamber has been hosting Education Forums for three years. Last year they focused on early childhood education.

This year, they return to the topic of public instruction.

The keynote speaker Glenda Ritz is the incumbent Superintendent of Public Instruction for Indiana. The Chamber’s Director of Marketing and Public Relations Kelley Brown explained why they are interested in bring Ritz as their keynote speaker.

“One of the chamber’s objectives is to create opportunities where our members and the public can engage with a dialogue with decision-makers that affect the community,” Brown says, “Bringing our education leaders, specifically Glenda Ritz, allows the public to ask questions that are really pertinent to our young people, our schools and the whole education process.”

Ritz will offer general information about public education and then lead a discussion of various education topics throughout the evening.

After, there will be a question-and-answer session.

“Given some of the issues that have been in the papers about Indiana’s grading system, I-STEP and other issues, I think we will get a great many questions,” Brown says.

The Education Forum will be held Tuesday, October 1 from 4 p.m. to 5:30 at Deer Park Manor.

Fall Tocqueville Lecture Series On the Limits of Capitalism Begins Friday

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The Tocqueville Program at Indiana University Bloomington will kick off the fall 2013 series Friday. The program was founded in 2009, says Director of the Tocqueville Program, Aurelian Craiutu.

“The main goal of the program is to organize a series of lectures and conferences that will bring theoretical foundations of American democracy to campus,” Craiutu says, “We are holding lectures on European democracy, liberalism and the constitution.

The first speaker for this year is Deirdre McCloskey and she will be speaking on capitalism and its critics and defenders. Craiutu says that she is very knowledgeable and has great passion for ideas.

“She is a truly international scholar with a voracious passion for ideas and amazing knowledge, she has been writing over 300 articles over the past three decades,” Craiutu says, “Tomorrows talk will be about the re-examination of the virtues limits of capitalism and the markets.”

Craiutu is hoping that those who attend will participate in the discussion and learn new ideas.

“I want to convey to someone with a passion for ideas that ideas to make a difference and matter. I hope we have a spirited debate on a topic that is very controversial, and I hope to have a civilized conversation on the limits of capitalism,” Craiutu says.

This event will take place on September 20 from 12 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. in the Tocqueville Room located at 513 North Park Avenue.

Edgewood High School Approved For Pricey Field Trip To Germany

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On Monday the Richland Bean Blossom School Corporation approved a field trip to Germany, despite concerns from some Board members.

Amy Norris, the German teacher at Edgewood High School, asked for permission to take a group of students to Lingen, Germany, next summer.

Board member Randy Wright questioned the safety of trips overseas.

Wright referred to Board member Debra Walcott, who was not present at the meeting. He said she’d be concerned about the chaperones getting a free trip. Walcott has voiced concern about student field trips in past meetings. Board President Dana Kerr asked for more specifics about what concerned other Board members.

The cost of the trip is roughly $2,500 per student, and some board members said they worried that would be too expensive for many students.

Norris helps conduct fund raisers to help pay for the trips, assuming students are interested.

“Sometimes I have students whose family’s can afford it,” Norris says, “We’ve had fundraisers in the past and I am always willing to help the students raise as much money as they can. Having said that, we can’t possibly raise enough to cover each individual student’s trip.”

The Board later voted unanimously to approve the trip. But they also established a policy requiring teachers to present details about overseas trips at two separate Board meetings before getting approval.

 

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