MN Labor Leader Participates in White House Upskill Summit

IUPAT Business Manager Terry Nelson discusses community partnership, training and apprenticeship

On Friday, April 24, 2015, Terry Nelson, business manager of International Union of Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT) District Council 82 of Little Canada, Minnesota, joined 150 employers, labor leaders, foundations, non-profits, educators and tech innovators from across the country at this White House summit that is answering President Obama’s recent call to action to equip workers with the skills they need to advance into better-paying jobs.

The Upskill Initiative, which was announced by the President in his State of the Union address, has brought these leaders together to develop plans to work together and promote the adoption of upskilling training and career advancement strategies that improve workers’ ability to earn more over time.

Nelson was selected to participate because of the commitment the members of IUPAT District Council 82 have made to successfully build community partnerships in Minnesota and neighboring states through its recently launched CORE program (Community Organizing for Real Economics).

Such partnerships include:

  • Hmong American Partnership – A non-profit organization focused on moving the refugee and immigrant community towards social and financial prosperity.  The union met with the organization to discuss how we can overcome cultural and language barriers to train members of the Hmong community in IUPAT trades.
  • Urban Ventures – A faith-based non-profit organization with the mission to break the cycle of generational poverty.  The IUPAT is working with the group’s “Ready, Set, Work” program and creating a pre-apprenticeship program to complement their efforts.
  • Local School Education Programs – The IUPAT is in the process of creating a construction educational program for local high schools.   The program gives students who successfully complete the courses an opportunity to continue their training and build a career in construction through the IUPAT.

The International Union of Painters and Allied Trades was honored to participate in the Upskill Summit at the White House, and we continue to seek new opportunities to give our neighbors in our communities the chance to get high-paying jobs, even if they don’t have a higher education.

Learn more about IUPAT District Council 82 at www.IUPAT82.org, and the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades at www.IUPAT.org.  More information on UpSkill America at www.upskillamerica.org.

The International Union of Painters and Allied Trades represents men and women in the United States and Canada who work in the Finishing Trades – Industrial and Commercial Painting, Glazing and Glasswork, Drywall Finishing, Floor Covering Installation and Sign & Display.  Learn more about the IUPAT at www.IUPAT.org.