Rauner backing tollway effort to boost work force diversity
With the expectation of providing “better, broader opportunities” for a wide variety of enterprises and workers, including minorities and women, the Illinois Tollway, together with Gov. Bruce Rauner and other leaders, recently revealed plans to roll out a richer resource base.
"Our commitment to having a diverse work force is leading to stable, good-paying contracts and job opportunities for minorities, women and veterans," Rauner said in a Feb.10 release. "This is just the beginning. When these businesses succeed, we all succeed. I thank the tollway for its commitment and dedication to ensuring all Illinoisans have access these economic opportunities."
Rauner recently joined Illinois Tollway Chairman Bob Schillerstrom, board directors Corey Brooks and Joe Gomez, and executive director Greg Bedalov to clarify the agency’s vision for the future of its work force.
Specifically, the tollway will provide enhanced technical assistance to engage low-income, minority and disadvantaged firms in skill-building programs as well as provide construction work force training for workers, the release said.
The tollway said in the release it is boosting its annual investment to fund programs that will increase participation by diverse businesses and workers in its 15-year Move Illinois capital program.
"It's our goal to throw open the doors at the Illinois Tollway and the firms we do business with to support more diverse work forces and to create access to as many sustainable jobs as possible," Schillerstrom said in the release.
The Illinois Tollway is headquartered in Downers Grove near the intersection of Interstates 88 and 355. Operational since the 1950’s, it maintains nearly 300 miles of tollways throughout 13 northern Illinois counties.
“We want to build on our successes and create better, broader opportunities for disadvantaged and diverse businesses and workers," Bedalov said in the release.