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Baltimore County is close to landing an Amazon distribution center, to be located at Sparrows Point in eastern Baltimore County.

The next generation of the apprentice

Feb 16, 2017
P. Kenneth Burns

Apprenticeships have always been a way to provide on-the-job training for people who want to work in the skilled trades; like a carpenter or electrician.

Not so much for IT, until now.

Arash Azizzada

The Maryland Legislative Black Caucus and the NAACP announced a new legislative agenda last week, following the release of a U.S. Department of Justice report chronicling a system of discrimination in the Baltimore Police Department. Changing police recruitment practices was on the list.

“We will mandate and oversee the recruitment of officers by the Baltimore Police Department and require Baltimore residents, particularly African Americans and women, to be recruited and hired to fill the more than 3,000 officer positions comprising the agency,” state Del. Jill Carter, a Democrat who represents northwest Baltimore, said at the Black Caucus’ press conference.

But even before the report’s release, the Baltimore Police had begun building efforts to recruit from communities that haven’t historically attracted many applicants.

Local foundations and the federal government have promised to funnel money into Baltimore for job training programs to respond to some of the communities’ needs articulated during the weeks or protests after the death of Freddie Gray. But what happens when the jobs don’t materialize?

Waponi/flickr

The Maryland legislature is considering a bill called the "Maryland Second Chance Act of 2014" (SB 0804, HB 1166) which would shield convictions for ten non-violent misdemeanors from the eyes of the public-including most employers. A path to a second chance, or an unfair restriction on employers?