Lost in all the Russia news this week was President Trump's latest workforce initiative. On Thursday, he signed an executive order establishing the National Council for the American Worker.
The White House detailed the council's key goals.
- Develop a national campaign to raise awareness of workforce issues, such as the urgency of the skills crisis and the importance of STEM education;
- Create a plan for recognizing companies that demonstrate excellence in workplace education, training, retraining policies, and workforce investment;
- Help expand the number of apprenticeships and encourage increased investment in training and re-training American workers;
- Recommend a specific course of action for increasing transparency related to education and job-training programs, and propose ways to increase available job data; and
- Consider and implement the recommendations of the American Workforce Policy Advisory Board (Board), as appropriate.
Ivanka Trump, the president's daughter and senior White House advisor, is doing her best to get the word out about the effort.
This new initiative, she explained on "Fox & Friends" Friday, is "a call to action for the private sector." The parties participating in the new effort agreed to commit nearly 4 million new jobs, she eagerly noted.
The initiative will focus on skills training and education. They'll be reaching into high schools to train students for the workforce, while mid-to-late career workers will be trained in new skills.
Several major companies have already indicated they're ready to sign the pledge, Ivanka noted. Wal-Mart, agreed to 1 million enhanced career opportunities. Fed Ex agreed to 500,000. Apple said they wanted to honor the pledge, as did Boeing and Oracle.
Ivanka said that under the Trump administration, the economy has been booming and Americans have been finding more opportunities. She cited statistics from June that showed 600,000 workers entered or reentered the workforce. The current unemployment rate is 4 percent. It was 3.8 percent in May, which matched a 45-year low.