Water Equity Clearinghouse

City of New York: Sandy Recovery Workforce1

New York City, NY

After Hurricane Sandy struck New York City on October 29th of 2012, the City of New York quickly launched programs to help New Yorkers affected by the disaster. In particular, the NYC Housing Recovery Operations and the Build It Back Program dedicated their work to rebuilding homes and improving the resiliency of homes and communities. The programs were so effective that by the end of 2016, 90 percent of program participants had received checks and/or begun construction. Furthermore, 76 percent of the goal for single family homes was complete.

Efforts to Advance Water Equity

A partnership between Build It Back and the Department of Small Business Services gave rise to the Sandy Recovery Workforce1 program. This initiative aims to train and find employment for residents in impacted areas, particularly those who are too often overlooked in the hiring process.

The program has a number of benefits, including job matching and recruitment events, job training vouchers that prepare students for apprenticeships, opportunities for direct entry into construction union apprenticeships, career counseling, resume editing, and practice interviews.

Rebuilding these homes to better weather the next storm provides apprentices and newly hired trainees the opportunity to build skills in an area of work that can be applied to many careers. By investing in people and communities, Sandy Recovery Workforce1 is creating a generation of workers that will sustain the city and its infrastructure for many years.

Geographic Scale:
Type of Organization:
Government Agency
Pillar 2
Pillar 3
Vulnerable Populations Served:
Communities of Color
Lower-income Communities
Approach to Advancing Water Equity:
Capacity Building/Education