February 2016 Central Ohio Works Newsletter


Ohio Bans the Box

A message from the President & CEO Suzanne Coleman-Tolbert

On December 22, 2015, Governor John Kasich signed legislation that makes Ohio one of 20 states to ‘Ban the Box’ that asks about criminal backgrounds on job applications for public positions.  The legislation requires all public employers, including counties, townships, and municipal corporations, to remove questions about criminal convictions at the application level. The move, appropriately, won’t stop employers from finding out if candidates have a criminal conviction and considering it in the selection process, but it does give job seekers who may have had issues in the past, a way to advance through the initial screening in the job search process.

The Ban the Box movement isn’t new—nearly 100 cities and counties have adopted the policy. But I do wonder if people really understand what a statewide ban means not just for men and women who benefit immediately, but for our economy as a whole. Continue reading about Ban the Box and its impact.

Q&A with TyKiah Wright


As founder and CEO of WrightChoice, Inc., TyKiah Wright is a thought leader, trail blazer and advocate who is committed to diversity and developing the next generation workforce through internship placement and professional development training for minorities and people with disabilities.
Recently named one of the 2016 YWCA Women of Achievement, TyKiah says that though more companies are willing to have the conversation about hiring people with disabilities, there is a still a long way to go in utilizing the skills and life experiences of this group of eager workers.

Workforce Development Board Chair named 2015 Executive of the Year

Archie D. Williamson, Jr., president and CEO of Diversified Systems, Inc., and chair of Workforce Development Board of Central Ohio,  was named as the 2015 Executive of the Year by Columbus Business First BizTech, as published in the December 18, 2015 issue of Columbus Business First. This award recognizes one executive within the community for demonstrated leadership in the areas of technology and innovation in their organization, industry, and the Central Ohio community. Read more here.

Weekly Job Expos v3 (2)

Mental health first aid training coming to COWIC


Through our collaboration with the Alcohol, Drug and Mental Health (ADAMH) Board of Franklin County, COWIC will provide a Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) training to staff in 2016. The MHFA training is a national program that was developed in 2001. It aims to help non-clinical individuals develop skills so they may assist and respond to someone who is experiencing a mental health crisis. The training also helps participants identify, understand and respond to the signs and symptoms of mental health and substance abuse issues.
ADAMH was the first agency to bring the Mental Health First Aid training to Ohio in 2012 and has since trained 15 organizations and over 400 people. ADAMH helps Franklin County residents find affordable, quality mental health and substance abuse and addiction services.
Thank you, ADAMH for providing this important training to our staff!