Gov. Kathy Hochul’s administration recently agreed to a proposal that could make it easier for migrants to get temporary jobs in state government.
“Hotel owners and restaurant owners coming to me: 'Can you send some of the migrants up here? We need them.' I hear this in every corner of the state,” Hochul said Tuesday at an Albany-based press conference when asked about the program.
What You Need To Know
- Gov. Kathy Hochul is eyeing 4,000 entry-level posts that are currently unfilled within state agencies, according to an internal memo obtained by NY1
- Jobs won’t be limited to just migrants and officials are billing it as a “win-win”
- Hochul said there's around 40,000 open positions according to submissions by private businesses to the state Department of Labor
The Civil Service Commission voted to approve the measure on Jan. 18 and is working with agencies to implement the changes, which include dropping typical application requirements like proof of a high school diploma or proficiency in English.
“I have 10,000 openings in the New York State workforce. From our operations to SUNY, I have 10,000 openings. So this is to give options to people but to say we are working intensely to get work authorization — these are all legal people,” said Hochul.
The goal is to make it faster for migrants to get jobs once they get work authorization.
Hochul is eyeing 4,000 entry-level posts that are currently unfilled within state agencies, including clerical or administrative roles, technical support, equipment service and repair and food services.
Jobs won’t be limited to just migrants and officials are billing it as a “win-win,” according to an internal memo dated Jan. 12 from the Department of Civil Service first reported by Bloomberg News and obtained by NY1.
“I’m anxious to get this moving quickly, and once they’re approved, we can match people to jobs. They don’t need to be reliant on services any longer, which I think is the objective to not have people supported by taxpayers in our shelters,” said Hochul.
It’s part of an effort to inject new blood into a shrinking state workforce.
Timothy Hogues, who serves as the commissioner of the state’s Civil Service Commission, decried vacancies during a state budget hearing Tuesday before the state Legislature, saying they’ve already implemented temporary hiring measures on an emergency basis.
Over the last decade, the state’s overall workforce has declined about 10% — and the shedding of jobs was propelled by the pandemic.
Mayor Eric Adams also likes the idea.
“I would love to get migrants and asylum seekers to help with the lifeguard shortage. We’ve been successful in getting almost 30,000 people to [file] applications, including work authorization, asylum, TPS — we want more,” he said Tuesday during a press conference at City Hall.
He said the key is to speed up the federal government’s long process that green lights work approval for the nearly 67,000 currently living in the city’s care.
The move could help the state labor department fill around 40,000 open jobs posted by private businesses, but they’re mainly outside the Big Apple.
“We’re also looking forward to the state continuing to work to resettle families,” said Anne Williams Isom, deputy mayor for Health and Human Services, during the City Hall-based press conference Tuesday.
But there’s an ongoing challenge convincing migrants to relocate upstate.
The state’s resettlement program has only moved 121 individuals outside the five boroughs. Another 364 have been approved and are awaiting placement, according to City Hall.