Over 125 House Democrats to DOL: Changes to Apprenticeship System Violate the Law
“…This proposed regulation undermines the existing Registered Apprentice system, including the investments States, employers and unions have made across the country…”
The Members are requesting a 60-day extension of the public comment period.
WASHINGTON – Today, led by Education and Labor Chairman Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (VA-03), and Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations Subcommittee Chair Rosa DeLauro (CT-03), over 125 House Democrats sent a letter to the Department of Labor regarding its proposed changes to the apprenticeship system.
In the letter, the Members express deep concern over the Department’s proposal to establish an alternative apprenticeship program that lacks longstanding safeguards for apprentices—noting that the proposed rule violates multiple requirements under the National Apprenticeship Act. Specifically, the Members note that the proposed rule was developed by diverting federal resources away from Registered Apprenticeship programs (RAs), despite the Department claiming this proposal should “not come at the cost of existing Registered Apprenticeship programs.”
“This NPRM undermines key standards and protections that are necessary to safeguard the welfare of apprentices,” the Members wrote. “In sum, this proposed regulation undermines the existing RA system, including the investments States, employers and unions have made across the country, by enabling programs to be created with no Departmental oversight and potentially lower quality standards under the name of ‘apprenticeship.’”
The Members, including all of the Members of the committees with relevant jurisdiction, also caution that introducing any new and potentially lower-quality programs marketed under the banner of “apprenticeship,” but lacking the standards and protections inherent in Registered Apprenticeships, will lead to confusion to apprentices and employers.
Given the substantive changes to existing regulations proposed by the Department, the Members are requesting a 60-day extension of the public comment period.
The full text of the letter is here.
Democratic Press Office, 202-226-0853
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