As we work to implement green stormwater infrastructure and nature based solutions within our Cities, there are a number of challenges limiting a green infrastructure workforce that supports living wages and accessible career pathways. The Green Stormwater Infrastructure Workforce Collaborative (The Collaborative) serves as a space to both problem-solve on significant challenges in the GSI workforce development space, and to co-create projects and products that seek to serve as solutions to these challenges. We seek to serve the needs of workers seeking family wage jobs in green infrastructure employment, as well as employers seeking qualified workforce to accomplish GSI projects across Western Washington State. The Collaborative is a voluntary, non-hierarchical partnership of individuals, organizations, businesses, educational institutions and government agencies.
The Collaborative seeks to:
- Provide a positive, collaborative space to share knowledge, challenges, and opportunities;
- Center racial equity in efforts to develop career pathways;
- Increase access to information and opportunities for internships, education, and long-term career positions within the GSI field;
- Develop equitable and accessible on-ramps for early career and career transitions, including investing in mechanisms for training and mentorship;
- Advocate and actively shape equitable, living-wage, healthy, and safe career opportunities
- Be engaged in the effort to standardize Best Management Practices within GSI to contribute to sustainable career opportunities
- Government (incl. Conservation Districts and Agencies at any/all levels)
- Contractors & Trainers (incl. education, installation, and maintenance contractors/businesses)
- Nonprofits (incl. Foundations, advocates, and project partners)
- Frontline Communities
Connect with The Collaborative:
Collaborative members can connect in smaller workgroups, which currently include:
- Exploring a workforce pilot for youth and young adults in Pierce County
- Activating recommendations within the Mapping GSI Careers to Improve Diversity and Inclusivity report
- Recruiting additional participants and developing communications to expand the network of those collaborating on workforce development
The Nature Conservancy in Washington currently acts as the primary convener of the coalition with facilitator and strategic support from SM Watts Consulting.
If you are interested in learning more or getting involved in the work of the Collaborative, share your interest and we will follow-up.
© Hannah Letinich