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Maryland Joins Prestigious Consortium on Occupational Licensing Policies

Member states will work to reduce barriers to entry for at-risk populations

BALTIMORE (Sep. 21, 2017) – The Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation (DLLR) is proud to announce its membership to the National Occupational Licensing Learning Consortium, a peer learning consortium on occupational licensing policies. This selective group will implement actions to remove barriers to labor market entry and improve portability and reciprocity.

"Maryland works tirelessly to ensure its residents can find and secure jobs," said Maryland Department of Labor Secretary Kelly M. Schulz. "We want people to relocate here, and we want our residents – all of our residents – to grow and flourish in their careers. This consortium will help us identify any occupational licensing policies that contradict those goals."

Eleven states were chosen for the consortium by the National Conference of State Legislatures, National Governors Association Center for Best Practices, and the Council of State Governments. Member states will identify areas within their individual policies that may impede entry for populations most burdened by those policies. Further, they will examine potential solutions to reduce related barriers. These populations include skilled immigrants, people with criminal records, active duty military, veterans and their spouses, and unemployed and dislocated workers.

"The consortium will provide Maryland with the structure and platform we need to reduce unnecessary barriers to labor market entry," said Schulz. "By working with licensing boards and immigrant, re-entry, workforce development, and military family-serving organizations, we will establish a deep level of statewide investment in reducing those licensing barriers."

By way of the consortium, Maryland will

  • connect the desires and skills of barrier-ridden job seekers with the needs of local businesses,
  • learn and apply strategies from other states to promote accessibility in state licensing policy,
  • create tools for special populations to alleviate restrictive or overly burdensome licensing requirements, and
  • establish regional and national compacts or reciprocity agreements to promote the portability of licenses.

Over the next three years, member states will engage with one another in a structured, peer learning consortium in which they will share ideas and solutions to complex occupational licensing issues. Learning consortium states will benefit from a variety of resources and tools to help states identify strategies to reduce labor market barriers and improve the portability of occupational licenses.

Other consortium members include the states of Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Nevada, Wisconsin, and Utah.

Theresa Blaner

About the Maryland Department of Labor
The Maryland Department of Labor is committed to safeguarding and protecting Marylanders. We're proud to support the economic stability of the state by providing businesses, the workforce, and the consuming public with high-quality, customer-focused regulatory, employment, and training services. For updates and information, follow the Maryland Department of Labor on Twitter (@MD_Labor), Facebook and visit our website.