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Older Workers Committee Meeting minutes6/21/05June 21, 2005:
OLDER WORKER COMMITTEE for the Maine Jobs Council
Promoting the Value of Maine’s Older Workers
Meeting Notes: June 21, 2005
Dan Muth (Co-Chair) Janie Miller (Co-Chair) Jim McGrath Cynthia Dowd Suzanne Blais Andrew Matlins John Christie Bryant Hoffman Mary Fran Gamage
Guests: Brenda Watson, Senior Sense Liz Fafard, Senior Community Service Employment Program Carol Higgins, Eastern Agency on Aging Steve Duval, Bureau of Employment Services Nick Laverty, Bureau of Employment Services Garret Oswald, Maine Jobs Council
Welcome: Janie Miller, Dan Muth Janie opened the meeting with introductions of members and guests.
Steve and Garret initiated a discussion of how the Older Worker Committee can take a broader and different role on older worker issues.
Steve suggested we begin working to provide the MJC with considered suggestions on policies around service to older workers. The way we connect with the Policy Committee is through our representative to that group, Janie Miller, whose responsibility includes transmitting our suggestions to them and informing us of Policy Committee requests for suggestions as well.
To assist the committee in understanding what we want to accomplish, we can look at ideas through a “lens” using the “Four A’s”: Is the issue one of Advocacy? Awareness? Alignment? or Accountability?. Steve suggested we measure our future work plan against the Four A’s and based on that develop policy statements to submit to the Policy Committee.
Each of the MJC committees needs to identify what the work is by asking a policy question, applying the lens, developing a draft, and then submitting it to the Policy Committee for review of the impact and consequences, and amendment or approval.
Some policies we suggest may have a broad impact, while the impact of others may be more specific. For example, if the issue is “livable wage” is our recommendation aligned with the rest of the MJC’s policies and ideas? We will be able to comment on and participate in framing the policy. Suggestions for discussion included developing policies on promoting services to older workers and improving access to services for older workers.
Our first task is to develop a vision and create a work plan, and to inform our discussion with a scan of current Maine and other states’ practices and policies around older workers. For example, a USDOL protocol for serving older workers exists; how can we foster it?
Dan, Jim: Public Service Announcement
Dan showed the updated tape for comments. The tape was made by SCSEP at the national level. We intend to use it to begin to educate both older workers and employers about the opportunities for work and the experienced pool of people available. We hope to follow this PSA with others.
We benefited from comments of several guests, especially Carol Higgin’s suggestions based on her experiences with PSA’s. Changes were suggested and approved. Janie will revise the screens, and Jim and Dan will work with a vendor for the technical services. Garret said the MJC can provide up to $200 to have the tape finished and copied. Before the tape is aired there will be a chance for final comments from this Committee.
The protocol for referrals in response to the PSA was discussed. When the Committee decides on the referral process the BES will inform the Hotline staff and the CareerCenters.
As a sidebar, referral protocols merit discussion in the future as this may suggest a service alignment issue that requires policy development.
NEXT MEETING: August 16, Augusta CareerCenter 1 - 3 p.m.
Future meetings: October 18 and December 20, 2005, Augusta CareerCenter 1 - 3 p.m.