New Immigration Forum Project Addresses ESL Worker Mobility

The National Immigration Forum just announced a new project, the Skills and Opportunities for the New American Workforce.

The project will help retailers better support employees with limited English language proficiency to advance their careers. It will influence public-private partnerships between businesses and service providers to use English language learning in to support employee mobility the workplace.

According to the Brookings Institution, nearly 1 in 10 working-age adults is considered limited English proficient, and the retail sector has a significant number of employees for whom English is a second language.

The project is funded by a $1.2 million grant from the Wal-Mart Foundation and will be piloted with retail businesses in Houston, Miami and New York. Initial business partners include Kroger and Publix grocery stores.

The National Immigration Forum will collaborate with Miami Dade College and the Community College Consortium for Immigrant Education to design and implement a scalable, contextualized learning program that includes online and worksite training methods.

Skills and Opportunities for the New American Workforce is part of the Forum’s New American Workforce initiative to work with businesses in assisting eligible employees with the U.S. citizenship process.