|Tommy G. Thompson|
State of Wisconsin
|OFFICE OF THE SECRETARY|
201 East Washnington Avenue
P.O. Box 7946
Madison, WI 53707-7946
|Department of Workforce Development|
Hundreds of Wisconsin families began the road to a better life in September as the entire state of Wisconsin moved from the AFDC welfare entitlement to Wisconsin Works.
"W-2 is accomplishing the much needed goal of moving people out of poverty through employment. I am heartened by the success of thousands of people who have entered the workforce already and the hundreds who are getting the training and work experience which will help them move forward," said Linda Stewart, Secretary of the Department of Workforce Development.
"The transition from AFDC to W-2 has been remarkably orderly considering the comprehensiveness of the program and the scope of the challenges," Stewart said. "But it is no surprise to me; Wisconsin's 80 local W-2 providers have been diligent in addressing the individual needs of the people they serve with solutions that make sense in their own localities."
Failure to serve an eligible W-2 participant can result in an agency being fined $5,000. The local W-2 agencies have until March 1998 in which to convert the last AFDC case to W-2.
"This transition period was provided to assure that the correct and most beneficial placement of each participant will be made," Stewart added. Because it is not a "one-size-fits-all" program, W-2 can be accommodated to the skill level of each participant to provide them with the workplace skills, training, and education to succeed.
This is the first of what are planned to be monthly reports on the progress of the nation's leading welfare to work program. These reports will show:
This report shows:
"These numbers represent real progress, not just in income but in quality of life," Stewart said.
Under W-2, each participant's individual and family needs are assessed in a personal visit with a Financial and Employment Planner (FEP). After the needs assessment is completed, a detailed employability plan is drawn up. These Participation Plans are finalized only with the signed consent of the individual. The FEP continues to update the plan as needed. To help ensure that the family remains self-sufficient the FEP works with the participant even after unsubsidized employment is found.
Because employability plans are individualized, participants are only required to work to the best of their ability. Individuals dealing with issues such as an incapacitated child, domestic abuse or AODA problems may be placed into W-2 Transitions (W-2 T).
W-2 provides paid work experience and 10 to 12 hours a week of education and training in the
W-2 Transitions and Community Service levels. W-2 helps all participants access subsidized child care (for as little as $9 a week for two children), transportation aid, job access loans, Food Stamps, and health care.
on September 30, 1997
|* includes 147 receiving benefits while caring for infants under 12 weeks old|