Mayor Pugh Announces Baltimore Youth Offered Record Number of Summer Jobs

Several thousand of the 8,300 YouthWorks participants begin working during the first of two, five-week summer sessions

Today more than 7,000 Baltimore City youth and young adults, ages 14-21, will start working at hundreds of YouthWorks summer job sites. Operated by Mayor Catherine E. Pugh’s Office of Employment Development, YouthWorks has provided more summer employment opportunities in 2017 than ever before thanks to the impressive public-private support from government, businesses, foundations and individuals.

YouthWorks is recognized for the breadth and scope of its summer job programming, annually employing several thousands of young city residents under the YouthWorks moniker for more than 20 years. This year marks the first time that more than 8,300 young residents are offered jobs, making YouthWorks one of the city’s largest employers during the summer months.

“I am so proud of these motivated and talented young people who have prepared for months to be productive workers this summer,” Mayor Pugh said. “They represent the typical young Baltimore citizen – anxious to learn, contribute and identify possible careers. YouthWorks is an exemplary example of a successful public-private venture that provides short- and long-term benefits for youth and employers, as well as our communities and our city’s economy.”

Local funding for YouthWorks is expected to be close to $2.5 million, which includes about $550,000 from the Casino Local Impact Grant Fund. But the city’s contributions don’t end there. Thanks to Mayor Pugh’s commitment to the program and her direction given to city agencies, 450 youth will be working in city jobs earning salaries funded by the sponsoring agencies.

State funding for YouthWorks includes $1.4 million through the Governor’s Office, the Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation and the Maryland State Department of Educations, Division of Rehabilitation Services (DORS).

Additionally, the Maryland State Department of Human Resources/Baltimore City Department of Social Services has allocated $2.25 million to support summer job placements for foster youth and those receiving Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF).

"Our increased investment in the YouthWorks program is a reflection of our agency's commitment to ensuring that young people in Baltimore City are afforded meaningful job opportunities that will help shape them into successful adults in the workplace,” Baltimore City Department of Social Services Director Molly Tierney said. “We wholeheartedly believe that an investment in the YouthWorks program is an investment toward improving the future of our youth and community as a whole."

Local foundations have also stepped up to help the effort led by The Annie E. Casey Foundation and The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation with contributions of $750,000 and $100,000, respectively.

“A summer job can be an incredibly valuable experience that lasts a lifetime,” said Patrick McCarthy, The Annie E. Casey Foundation’s president and CEO. “We are proud to support this effort that is giving a record number of youth an opportunity to get a taste of the workforce, earn a paycheck and possibly learn a thing or two about personal finances – all of which are important to have on the path to adulthood.”

For many years Baltimore’s business community has understood that supporting teen employment is not only a valuable altruistic effort, but also that it’s a wise business decision to help directly hire and train its future workforce. To date, the following companies and organizations are among those that have committed to donate at least $15,000 to YouthWorks and/or directly hire at least 10 participants: The Johns Hopkins Health System and the Johns Hopkins University, Sagamore Development Company LLC, The Bank of America Charitable Foundation, Baltimore Gas and Electric, Motorola, Martin’s Caterers, MedStar Health, University of Maryland Medical Center & University of Maryland Medical System, University of Maryland, Baltimore, Kaiser Permanente, Whiting-Turner, and T. Rowe Price Foundation Inc.

While the number of jobs and the funding are essential, YouthWorks’ true value is that Baltimore’s young people experience a hard day’s work and feel the pride that comes from earning a paycheck. They will work in more than 900 worksite locations in all types of sectors, including health care, hospitality/tourism, finance, the arts, law, construction, energy and more.

YouthWorks 2017 will run for five weeks in two cycles (June 26-July 28 and July 10-August 11). Participants will work a minimum of 25 hours per week and receive at least minimum wage – $9.25/hour.

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