Program Increases Employment Opportunities Among Citizens 55 and Older

The Maryland Department of Aging’s Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP) was created as part of the Older Americans Act as a way to offer subsidized training for low-income adults 55 and older who are unemployed and have poor employment prospects.

From the Department of Aging’s website,

Individuals are given a training assignment that most closely matches their personal goals for employment. Training assignments are coordinated with non-profit or government agencies, also known as “Host Agencies” and are for 20 hours per week, at the established minimum wage hourly rate, currently $7.25 Applicants are not required to have previous work experience. SCSEP provides subsidized training and employment for a period of up to two years. The goal of the program is to help older workers to develop workplace skills which will enable them to attain permanent, unsubsidized employment, either with their Host Agencies, or with other non-profit, government or private sector employers.

Baltimore City Council President, Bernard C. “Jack” Young discusses a press conference in his recent newsletter expanding the SCSEP in Baltimore City.  Young focuses on the feat of older citizens finding jobs and gaining the training needed for 21st century careers.

“Through this program, our seniors gain new skills and earn wages that they spend right here in Baltimore,” Secretary Lawlah said.

AARP Maryland state director Henry M. “Hank” Greenberg said that seniors are often a forgotten casualty of the Great Recession.

“The oldest and poorest among us have been most affected by the worst downturn since the Great Depression,” Greenberg said. “Americans 50-plus now have the largest overall increase in long-term unemployment, the longest spells of joblessness and the least likelihood of finding jobs. Without SCSEP, local communities would be hard hit, and their economies put at risk.”

No senior should be forced to live in poverty because of limited employment opportunities. Our active seniors have a great deal left to contribute to our society and I’m happy to support a program that works to utilize the knowledge and skills of our older adults.

To read more from Baltimore City Council President Young’s e-newsletter, click here.

To learn more about the Maryland Department of Aging’s SCSEP, visit its website.

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