One in 10 Philadelphia adults is unemployed. Many lack the skills to compete for the jobs that do exist. A one-size-fits-all approach to employment will not work. More effort is needed to match potential workers with available opportunities.

Some groups face extra hurdles: in particular, single mothers and those with criminal records. Many female heads of households can’t take or hold jobs if they don’t have access to affordable childcare. For a significant number of Philadelphians, a criminal record presents a serious impediment to employment, even though the year-old “ban the box” law prohibits employers from automatically disqualifying individuals with a criminal record before considering their applications.


Using tax credits and other incentives, CEO, nonprofit partners, and key City departments will focus on attracting businesses that provide entry-level jobs and opportunities for career advancement like leisure and hospitality, healthcare, home or childcare, transportation, and warehousing. CEO will create a taskforce to increase job opportunities and training for adults who face the greatest barriers to employment, and develop new career pathways to low-skill individuals to obtain family-sustaining employment in the long-term. The implementation and effectiveness of “ban the box” legislation will be evaluated.