Economic Progress Institute issues call for workforce investment in latest report

BY Steve Ahlquist

The Economic Progress Institute (EPI) released State of Working Rhode Island 2017: Paving the Way to Good Jobs yesterday with a number of policy recommendations, including raising the minimum wage “towards $15/hr,” maintaining “child care assistance, Medicaid and the Earned Income Tax Credit” and protecting, improving and expanding programs such as “earned paid sick leave, temporary care giver insurance and temporary disability insurance,” among others.

The report focuses on the role of education and training as the economy “continues to shift away from traditional blue-collar jobs such as manufacturing and construction and towards service sector jobs in occupations such as leisure and hospitality, education and health services, and professional and business services.” The gains in manufacturing that Rhode Island has been experiencing are called “modest” in the report.