PAWTUCKET – The state Department of Labor and Training (DLT), which closed its NetWORKri office in Pawtucket last September, is providing specially-formatted computers to organizations in or near the city to help improve access to its Unemployment Insurance claims filing system and its EmployRI.org virtual career center.
Gov. Lincoln Chafee urged DLT to target the city for alternative service-delivery strategies in the wake of last fall’s closing. The department is also working with the Pawtucket Public Library to offer free public workshops on such job search skills as interviewing, résumé writing and networking.
"At a time of shrinking federal dollars and high unemployment, it is critical that we find innovative ways to deliver job-matching services and supports to Rhode Island communities," Chafee said in a written statement.
Four community-based organizations each received two free computers for public use: Anchor Recovery, 249 Main St., Pawtucket; Pawtucket Housing Authority, 560 Prospect St., Pawtucket; Progreso Latino, 626 Broad St., Central Falls, and SER Jobs for Progress, 100 East Ave., Pawtucket.
Funded through a U.S. Department of Labor grant, these computers are available for free to any Rhode Island job seekers during the regular operating hours of the cooperating agencies.
Job seekers may use the computers to visit the RI Department of Labor and Training web site at www.dlt.ri.gov  to file an unemployment insurance claim or to certify for weekly benefit eligibility. Due to limited staffing, the department has advised the public to file claims online rather than through the telephone system if at all possible. Online claims-filing is available in English, Spanish and Portuguese.
Job seekers may also use the computers to visit www.employri.org , a virtual career center that spiders multiple online job boards to create a one-stop job search site for Rhode Islanders. Through EmployRI, job seekers can search by preferred employers, geography, job type and required skills. It contains self-service résumé and skill assessment applications, as well as labor market information on Rhode Island's high-growth industries.
For more information on the programs and services available to all Rhode Islanders, call the RI Department of Labor and Training at (401) 462-8000 or visit the web site at www.dlt.ri.gov .