Department of Labor Urged to Protect Apprentices

In Michigan, apprenticeships are a necessary part of the licensing requirements for many occupations, including electricians, plumbers and boiler operators.  On Monday, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel joined twelve other Attorneys General in submitting comments to the U.S. Department of Labor urging it to revise its proposed apprenticeship rules thereby strengthening protections for apprentices. There were three main concerns that officials highlighted regarding those rules. They said the rules don’t include specifics about what an apprenticeship program must include in order to be certified. They also don’t adequately protect apprentices from low-quality programs. Lastly, they believe that the USDOL doesn’t provide proper enforcement when apprenticeship programs fail to provide quality training and education. Nessel said, “With more than 1,000 apprenticeship programs in the state and more than 18,000 active apprentices, Michigan absolutely has a stake in strengthening this rule.”