WIOA & Layoff Aversion Legislation

Working with Senators Elizabeth Warren, Bob Casey and Sherrod Brown, the SVA and the NCTA coalition were partly responsible for a new provision in proposed WIOA regulations that, for the first time, requires states to establish real layoff aversion programs.  The 2014 reauthorization of the bipartisan Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) and release of the White House’s review of federal employment and training programs – which highlighted layoff aversion – demonstrate increased federal attention to the SVA’s job saving models and sector partnerships and other innovative jobs measures.  This could result in tens of thousands of saved good jobs over the next few years.

The National Call to Action (NCTA) is a multi-state, tri-partite initiative originally sponsored by the US Department of Labor that designed and presented a cost-effective, comprehensive plan to spur economic recovery and put people back to work.  The Executive Director of the SVA was one of the architects of the NCTA and has been helping chair the ongoing NCTA Advisory Group.  

Many of the NCTA-showcased practices have exploded onto the public landscape, including the Department's support for layoff aversion, the President’s push for new manufacturing and in-sourcing initiatives, and Congressional interest in layoff aversion and industry partnerships as part of the Workforce Investment and Opportunities Act (WIOA).  The auto industry has continued the resurgence presented at the NCTA inaugural event, building (and selling) more efficient vehicles.  New sustainable business, infrastructure and clean energy initiatives have taken off even further. 

The NCTA has initiated a productive collaboration with the Northeast-Midwest Institute (NEMWI) and NE-MW Congressional Caucus. The Northeast-Midwest Institute is a private nonprofit, non-partisan research organization based in the nation’s capital.  Its mission:  to promote the economic vitality, the environmental quality, as well as regional equity for the 18 Northeastern and Midwestern states including Pennsylvania. Working in concert with its sister organizations, the Northeast-Midwest Congressional Caucuses, the Institute has a well-marked history of addressing major problems and issues in the region.

The NEMWI’s new website includes an exciting new focus on our “Manufacturing and Workforce Peer Learning Network”  (http://www.nemw.org/policy-areas/workforce-and-economic-development-peer-learning-network/), and highlights some of our recent mutual activities to retain, restore and create jobs:

  • The SVA co-coordinated regular monthly NCTA-NEMWI calls since 2012, allowing participants to share best practices and learn about relevant economic trends and federal news, funding, and legislation.
  • The SVA and NCTA participated in a Capitol Hill briefing hosted by NEMWI and Congressional Caucus (February 2015) on proven, cost-effective uses of federal resources and assistance for workforce and economic development at every stage of the business life cycle.
  • We tracked federal funding and legislation of importance to the region’s manufacturing sector, including workforce legislation and manufacturing initiatives.
  • We’re exploring engagement with the Congressional Revitalizing Older Cities Task Force.
  • We’re exploring workforce needs and challenges surrounding aging infrastructure, especially water and sewer system operations and maintenance.

National Call To Action (NCTA)

The National Call to Action (NCTA) to Retain, Restore and Create Good Jobs for Everyone was convened December 13, 2010 in Arlington, VA.  Convened by the US DOL (Final Report), the NCTA focused on the vital role that innovative jobs partnerships play in:

  • addressing economic recovery and expansion
  • averting and minimizing layoffs, and
  • getting affected workers back to work as soon as possible. 

In 2009-2010, the SVA authored a national economic recovery paper that recognized the importance of the Roosevelt-era DOL as a policy driver that advanced new best practices to end the Great Depression.  Working with other states and labor and business alliances, a “Next New Deal Coalition” has called on the Obama Administration to provide more support for state efforts to avert job losses and create new jobs.

Today’s economy presents serious challenges to our nation’s workers and businesses, and we must confront and overcome these challenges. The Great Recession was a devastating economic downturn,  destroying millions of jobs across the US. Confronted with these unprecedented challenges and an ongoing, painful economic malaise, the National Call to Action (NCTA) brought together national and regional leaders who do not accept the dangerous suggestion in some quarters that a 9-10% unemployment rate in America is the "new normal."  Read the NCTA Briefing Report Congressional Caucus.

The Call To Action is an effort to get more federal leadership in retaining and strengthening manufacturing jobs and putting dislocated workers back to work.  The Call will focus on bringing the best state models for layoff aversion and rapid response (for dislocated workers) to a national scale, putting the SVA in the center of a new policy initiative about ways to help states and communities recover.  The Obama Administration has joined several past administrations in recognizing the SVA's key leadership in layoff aversion as one of the underpinnings of a new “bottoms up” approach to saving and creating jobs.  NCTA Resource Guide, NCTA Briefing Report Congressional Caucus and the NCTA Final Report can provide to you more detail.


  • Books

    The Steel Valley Authority has made a number of important contributions, to setting a path toward responsible long-term investments and to layoff aversion methods and practices; through our books and publications.

  • Case Studies

    The following section contain case studies and policy papers authored or co-authored by SVA principals on saving jobs, investing responsibly or building sustainable communities.

  • Reports

    Over the years, the SVA has achieved recognition in many featured publications on the SEWN program and other program initiatives.