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AlabamaWorks launches online tool that shows people the path from public assistance to productive employment

Alabama state agencies launched this week an online dashboard that can show a user the pathway from public assistance into a self-sufficient career.

The tool is referred to as DAVID, an acronym of Dashboard for Alabamians to Visualize Income Determinations.

DAVID is a first of its kind joint project between the State of Alabama and the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.

“We are the first state to take a benefits cliff calculator and merge it with a workforce development career path planner,” explained Governor Kay Ivey in a statement. “This is a significant milestone and we are proud to, once again, be leading the way with innovative workforce development solutions for the people of Alabama. We are grateful for the work of the Atlanta Fed in developing this resource.”

Ivey views the DAVID project as a key tool in helping Alabama achieve its goal of 500,000 newly trained workers by 2025, long a top priority of the governor’s administration.

David Altig, a high ranking executive at the Atlanta Fed, remarked that DAVID will often be used by “workforce development professionals” who are assisting a worker that is looking for a career.

“It is important to address the issue of increased marginal tax rates—or benefit cliffs—in a coordinated way, to make sure that the incentives are not sending the wrong signal to people,” said Raphael Bostic, president and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.

Bostic said one of the goals of DAVID is that people will better understand the public benefits system, which he hopes will drive citizens “to invest in themselves and get to a more stable place.”

AlabamaWorks provided a video guide to the new tool, and more information on DAVID can be accessed here.

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Henry Thornton is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can contact him by email: henry@new-yhn.local or on Twitter @HenryThornton95.