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Concerned Residents Ask About Gary Airport Jobs

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April 23, 2014 —

The debate on who will get any new jobs generated at Gary-Chicago International Airport continued last night at a public forum at Marquette Pavilion on the new public-private partnership agreement.

Members of the Northwest Indiana Federation of Interfaith Organizations are concerned about the partnership agreement’s lack of specific goals for hiring workers from Gary and nearby economically-distressed communities.  P-3 committee member Bo Kemp told the group that the agreement calls for  ” robust requirements” for hiring firms owned by disadvantaged groups, including minorities, women and veterans.

Kemp also said annual plans must be presented by the private companies now operating it must be approved by the Airport Authority, so the airport board has the ability to set hiring goals for projects.

Gary Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson at the end of the forum told the audience that they’re right in saying that it can’t be assumed local employers will hire local people.  She said steps will be taken to ensure that there will be employment for local residents at the airport, including sanctions for employers that fail to do so.

 

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