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International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 494 contributed technology from former ITT Technical Institute Building

County Executive
Chris Abele

Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 494 (IBEW)/ National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) today announced the donation of 110 computers to the Milwaukee House of Correction. IBEW/ NECA recently purchased the former ITT Technical Institute on Layton Avenue in Greenfield, and it operates as the second campus for the Milwaukee Electrical Joint Apprenticeship & Training Center (JATC). The House of Corrections picked up the computers this week, and inmates will begin the recycling process within the next several weeks.

“IBEW and NECA exemplifies what it means to be a true community partner,” said Abele. “Not only do they provide top-of-the-line training facilities convenient across Milwaukee County to strengthen the pipeline to good union jobs for our residents, they have gone out of their way to ensure the House of Correction can responsibly and securely recycle the electronics.

The dated electronics will go to the House of Correction recycling program, rather than an e-waste recycler which would cost taxpayer dollars. Inmates at the House of Correction will convert the donated electronics into recyclable materials, which helps reduce landfill congestion and makes the environment cleaner. The program also provides valuable skills and experience to the inmates and gives them the opportunity to work time off of their sentence.

County Executive Chris Abele celebrates Labor Day with workers, IBEW Business Manager Dean Warsh, Milwaukee Bucks VP Alex Lasry, and DNC Secretary Jason Rae

“The House of Correction greatly appreciates the partnership with IBEW/NECA,” said Milwaukee County House of Correction Superintendent Michael Hafemann. “This donation will allow those remanded to our custody the opportunity to make productive use of their time during confinement. Inmates will learn the soft skills and job training necessary to enhance their employability once released from custody, gain useful work experience in the recycling industry, and reduce their time in custody for their participation. That’s a win-win-win for all those involved.”

In 2018, the Milwaukee County House of Correction received the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Overall Program Award for institutional diversion of trash with its recycling program. Inmates who choose to participate in the recycling program earn an hour of good time for every hour worked, where inmates work an average of 24 hours a week to remove one day from their sentence. This has a dual benefit of reducing time from their sentence while providing an educating on the recycling process. Recycling efforts have resulted in a 33 percent reduction in waste at the facility.

“The campus expansion of the Milwaukee Electrical Joint Apprenticeship & Training Center is an important step to prepare our apprentices and journeymen for the opportunities that present themselves in the service industries, manufacturing and the construction trades,” said Dean A. Warsh, Business Manager of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 494. “We are proud of our community, and proud to give back to our community by helping residents in Milwaukee County work towards re-entry.”

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