The Workforce Investment Act (WIA) combines federally-funded job training programs in Illinois into a "workforce development" system where individuals can find a job or train for a new career.
Services are provided through the state's one-stop delivery system, Illinois workNet™ Centers. Individuals who wish to apply for available training programs, or obtain other services, should report to the nearest Illinois workNet™ Center for assistance.
While the employment services and training programs available in each IL workNet™ Center may be somewhat different, they reflect the opportunities and needs of the Local Workforce Investment Area (or "LWIA"; there are 26 in Illinois), and are developed by a Local Workforce Investment Board.
Three levels. WIA establishes three basic levels of employment and training services to eligible individuals. All adults, age 18 or older, are eligible to receive "core services". Additional "intensive services" are available to unemployed individuals who have been unable to obtain jobs through core services and those who are employed but need additional training services to reach self-sufficiency. "Training services" are also available for those who meet intensive services eligibility but were unable to find employment through those services.
Core Services (available to all adults age 18 years or older):
- Job search and placement assistance (including career counseling)
- Labor market information (which identifies job vacancies; skills needed for in-demand jobs; and local, regional, and national employment trends)
- Initial assessment of skills and needs
- Information about and costs for local training providers
- Follow-up services to help customers keep their jobs once they are placed
Intensive Services (available to eligible adults who have been unable to find work through core services, or need additional training to reach self-sufficiency):
- Comprehensive assessments
- Development of individual employment plans
- Group and individual counseling
- Case management
- Short-term prevocational services
- Out-of-area job search assistance, or relocation assistance
- Internships, literacy activities
Training Services (for those who have received "intensive services" but are still unable to find employment):
- occupational skills training
- on-the-job training
- cooperative education programs, and private sector training programs
- job readiness training
- adult education and literacy activities
- customized employer training
Dislocated Worker and Youth Services
To be eligible for the dislocated worker program, a person must have received a lay off notice or have been laid off due to a company closure or mass layoff. Workers may also be eligible if they are currently unemployed and are unlikely to return to their prior occupation due to economic conditions in that industry.
To be eligible for the youth program, a person must be between the ages of 14 and 21, have low income, and have a substantial barrier to employment such as: deficient in basic literacy skills, school dropout, homeless, a runaway or a foster child, pregnant or parenting, an offender, or be an individual who requires additional assistance to complete an educational program, or to secure and hold employment.
Tutoring, mentoring, study skills training, and instruction leading to completion of secondary school