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Minnesota Legislature

New Law: Helping libraries assist job-seekers

Published (7/15/2011)
By Nick Busse
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Out-of-work Minnesotans have increasingly turned to public libraries to look for job openings, post applications and build their resumes online. A new law is designed to help libraries coordinate with workforce centers to help the unemployed.

Sponsored by Rep. Carol McFarlane (R-White Bear Lake) and Sen. Carla Nelson (R-Rochester), the law requires Gov. Mark Dayton to appoint a representative from public libraries to the Governor’s Workforce Development Council. The individual would serve as an advisor.

The law takes effect May 25, 2011.

The council helps guide the state’s workforce development efforts. Among other activities, it develops policy recommendations to administer the state’s 52 workforce centers. Run by the Department of Employment and Economic Development, the workforce centers help Minnesotans look for jobs and prepare for career changes.

Supporters of the new law say libraries have become a kind of information center for those who don’t have Internet access at home and need help using computers, especially older Minnesotans.

HF844*/ SF1204/CH74

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