“This partnership can help individuals re-entering our communities gain careers that can change their future outcomes,” said Sheriff Errol D. Toulon, Jr.

The Toulon Sheriff recently announced a partnership with the United Way of Long Island to help formerly incarcerated individuals gain job training and certification in the growing energy field. The Suffolk County Sheriff’s Office’s Sheriff Transition and Reentry Team (START) Resource Center is partnering with the United Way of Long Island to refer qualified candidates to their workforce development program, PowerUp! Wind, Solar & Renewables, provides free high-skills training focused on building the foundation and pathways for Long Islanders to pursue careers in the renewable energy industry.

“This partnership with United Way and access to their workforce development training academy can help individuals re-entering our community gain careers that can change their future outcomes. Thank you United Way for continuing to assist the START Resource Center in breaking the usual barriers to reintegration associated barriers and help us put these people on the path to success,” Sheriff Errol D. Toulon, Jr. said.

“The next big economic opportunity is renewable energy, and the United Way’s Workforce Development Academy is a leader in connecting underserved communities with high-skill training,” Theresa A. Regnante, President and CEO, United Way of Long Island. “This partnership with Sherriff Toulon and the Suffolk County Sherriff’s Office sends a powerful message that we are stronger when all sectors come together to improve people’s lives in ways that create a more inclusive and equitable economy .”

Earlier this year, two individuals who had been incarcerated at the Suffolk County Jail were referred to the United Way’s PowerUp! Wind, solar and renewable energy programs after they contact the START Resource Center for employment assistance. Two people passed the program and one managed to get a job in the industry.

United Way’s Workforce Development Training Academy offers free, high-skill training focused on building the foundation and pathways for Long Islanders to pursue careers in the renewable energy industry. The Academy is made up of United Way’s iconic VetsBuild, PowerUp! Wind, Solar and Renewable Energy and Youth Develop programs for the unemployed and those looking for work, veterans, young adults and others entering the job market. It operates out of United Way’s state-of-the-art E3 SmartBuild training center in Deer Park, complete with portable prototype wind turbines. Graduates of the academy are well-versed in the installation of clean heating and cooling technologies, high-efficiency HVAC, heat pumps, solar panels, electric vehicle charging, and the benefits of renewable energy. Training courses leverage hands-on classroom learning, on-the-job experience, and soft skills to aid employment.

The START Resource Center was established in 2020 by the Sheriff of Toulon and has since become a model for re-entry services across the country. With 85 percent of those who leave Suffolk Correctional Institutions staying in Suffolk County, the Toulon Sheriff is committed to ensuring they have the tools and resources they need to lead productive lives when they re-enter our community. Individuals participating in the program work directly with the START Resource Center to assess their needs during and after incarceration and make any necessary referrals – such as substance abuse treatment, education, job assistance, DSS assistance, identification issues, transportation , food, housing and clothing. They receive a comprehensive reentry plan that will help them succeed after release. Since its inception, the program has had tremendous results, with recidivism rates among those involved in the landing nearly half the New York state average.

For more information, please contact Public Information Officer Vicki DiStefano at Victoria.DiStefano@SuffolkCountyny.gov.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *