Action for Equity aims to provide ‘green work’ skills to BIPOC workers

Dorchester’s Action for Equity will be joined by city and state officials next Monday (Oct. 23) at an event in Four Corners to launch a program aimed at bringing more people of color into the ‘Green Economy” workforce.

Organizers say the Green Equity Partnership (GEP) will bring employers and community jobseekers together and offer technical training for building decarbonization for both retrofit and new construction.

The program is funded by a $1.2 million grant from Massachusetts Clean Energy Center.

“As a Black contractor in Boston, the Green Equity Partnership will provide the skills my employees will need to do tomorrow’s green work, so I can compete in the new green economy,” said Stafford Lewis, who owns Alpha Building.

“Employers like me sit on the GEP advisory committee so that we get to shape the program the way we need. This is for the people now working for and with us—not just about new hires. There are still spaces open for more employers to join the GEP.”

There are nearly 6,000 buildings in Boston that are required to achieve net-zero emissions under new city requirements. Under other regulations, GEP expects all new buildings will have new technology requirements, and new refrigerants to be used in all new heat pumps.

“I am excited that this program will expand access for BIPOC residents of Boston to train in HERS [Home Energy Rating System] and heat pump installation, that will support the city in achieving our carbon neutrality goals,” said Rev. Mariama White-Hammond, the city’s chief of Environment, Energy and Open Space, who added: “We must prioritize workforce development opportunities for environmental justice communities in the fields of decarbonization and energy efficiency.”

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