A cornerstone of RePower LA’s work is our support for the Utility Pre-Craft Trainee (UPCT) program, which was developed by IBEW Local 18 in partnership with LADWP. Against the backdrop of massive waves of planned retirement by DWP’s existing workforce, the Program was created to train future utility workers. The UPCT program has successfully opened up quality career path opportunities at both LADWP and the City for entry level workers across Los Angeles.
IBEW Local 18 was thoughtful about making sure the UPCT program would recruit from disadvantaged communities. RePower LA has done a lot of outreach and education to recruit people with criminal conviction histories, people of color, and women into the program, who comprise the majority of trainees.
To date, the UPCT program has trained 250 future utility workers. Over 90% of UPCTs in the program have come from zip codes with high unemployment rates, 13% are women, and 85% are people of color.