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Southern Company commits $100K to advance diversity in skilled trades

TradesFutures, Helmets to Hardhats create opportunities for underrepresented communities and veterans

Southern Company remains committed to ensuring equitable access and opportunities for all, including historically underrepresented and marginalized groups, in the communities it serves. The company recently announced a $100,000 pledge to support two nonprofit organizations furthering diversity, equity and inclusion in the skilled trades.

In partnership with North America’s Building Trades Unions (NABTU), Southern Company is offering apprenticeship readiness programs (ARPs) across the Southeast, preparing students with the knowledge and hands-on training needed for careers as skilled tradespeople. The programs focus on providing jobs for women, people of color and veterans.

Southern Company allocated $50,000 to TradesFutures, a nonprofit endeavoring to increase diversity in the construction industry through research, public education and promotion of ARPs.

“We are committed to developing a diverse workforce pipeline,” said Alabama Power Chairman, President and CEO Mark Crosswhite. “We are pleased to continue our partnership with NABTU and TradesFutures, working together to create pathways to meaningful careers and lifting up the communities we serve.”

“NABTU’s successful apprenticeship readiness programs throughout the U.S. are changing thousands of lives, and these programs could not happen without the support of partners like Southern Company and Alabama Power,” said North America’s Building Trades Unions President, Sean McGarvey.  “We know the power of investing in local workers to strengthen our highly-skilled construction workforce pipeline, and we are grateful for the longstanding commitment by Southern Company to do it with us.”

In addition, Southern Company donated $50,000 to Helmets to Hardhats, a nonprofit that connects, mentors and counsels National Guard, Reserve, retired and military service members transitioning from activity-duty with skilled training and quality career opportunities in the construction industry. Since 2003, Helmets to Hardhats has helped more than 36,000 military service members.

“Across the Southern Company system, we are committed to investing in programs and resources that help build a diversified talent pipeline to support the continued growth of the energy industry,” said Southern Company Gas’ chairman, president and CEO, Kim Greene. “We provide the energy infrastructure necessary to do business across the country, but we also make it a priority to contribute to the dynamic ecosystem and partnerships that assist with expansion, retention and recruitment of jobs. We are proud to continue to partner with Helmets to Hardhats, to connect transitioning active-duty military service members to vital industry roles.”

“Having the support of Southern Company gives Helmets to Hardhats the ability to not only reach more veterans, but change more lives,” said Helmets to Hardhats Executive Director, Martin Helms. “Our outreach to military service members helps clear away the clutter of dead-end jobs and allows us to connect them to middle class, family-sustaining career opportunities. We cannot thank Southern Company enough for their unwavering commitment to our nation’s military veterans and the Helmets to Hardhats program."

 

About NABTU

North America’s Building Trades Unions is an alliance of 14 national and international unions in the building and construction industry that collectively represent over 3 million skilled craft professionals in the United States and Canada. Each year, our unions and our signatory contractor partners invest almost $2 billion in private-sector money to fund and operate over 1,900 apprenticeship training and education facilities across North America that produce the safest, most highly trained and productive skilled craft workers in the world. NABTU is dedicated to creating economic security and employment opportunities for its construction workers by safeguarding wage and benefits standards, promoting responsible private capital investments, investing in renowned apprenticeship and training, and creating pathways to the middle class for women, communities of color and military veterans in the construction industry. For more information, please visit www.nabtu.org, and to learn more about the building trades efforts during this pandemic, please follow the hashtag #buildingtradeswhateverittakes.

 

About TradesFutures

TradesFutures is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization organized for the purpose of developing, promoting and improving educational programs known as apprenticeship readiness programs (ARPs). ARPs provide students with the fundamental skills and knowledge necessary to choose, obtain and succeed in a formal apprenticeship in the construction industry. In particular, ARPs can provide pathways for women, people of color and veterans to obtain family sustaining middle-class jobs in the construction industry. TradesFutures is further organized to increase diversity in the construction industry, to conduct and/or sponsor research and studies concerning the reasons individuals fail to obtain or complete an apprenticeship and to educate the public about the various career opportunities for craft workers in the construction industry.

 

About Helmets to Hardhats

Helmets to Hardhats is a national, nonprofit program that connects transitioning active-duty military service members, veterans, National Guard and reservists with skilled training and quality career opportunities in the construction industry. The program is designed to help military service members successfully transition back into civilian life by offering them the means to secure a quality career in the construction industry. Press Center