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Stimulus To Give A Lift To Vulnerable Groups

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Some of the most overlooked people in D.C. may soon get help from the federal government.

Three million dollars in stimulus money has been earmarked for pre-apprenticeship programs that would teach basic skills in construction to people who have no experience in that sector.

D.C. Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton says she's made sure some of that money will train people working on the new Department of Homeland Security headquarters in Southeast D.C.

The Congresswoman wants to focus on particular groups. "Women and minorities are a new pool of workers that have not as often been included in construction; those will be among the ones we train for these jobs," says Norton.

The pre-apprenticeship program at the DHS site will train more than 200 people, including youth, ex-offenders, and women. Federal jobs cannot be shared out by geography, so the training slots can't be set aside for D.C. residents versus Virginia residents, for example. But, Norton says she is publicizing the effort and will have people on site to help anyone interested in signing up.

Sabri Ben-Achour reports...

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