From left to right: Claudia Green, Executive Director of English for New Bostonians; Nam Pham, Assistant Secretary of Business Development and International Trade at MA Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development; Mary Truong, Executive Director of the MA Office for Refugees and Immigrants; Eduardo Pinedo, Distron Corporation; Janice Dexter-Ganek, Bristol Community College; Ben Lamarre, Program Manager at Distron Corporation; Maria Ortiz, Distron Corporation.
BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS—Distron Corporation, a manufacturing company in North Attleborough, MA, was recently awarded the English Works Campaign Certificate of Recognition for their civic leadership in support of English language classes for their immigrant employees. The award was presented as part of the English for New Bostonians’ Raising Our Voices breakfast at Northeastern University, an event that highlights the private sector involvement and investment in the English language skills of the immigrant workforce in the Commonwealth.
“Workplace ESOL training has helped our workforce to greatly understand our customer’s requirements” said Roger Lamarre, VP of Operations for Distron Corporation. “It also has bridged the communication gap with all involved in achieving quality products being built for all of our customers”.
Distron Corporation has provided on-site workplace ESOL classes in partnership with Bristol Community College to 14 of its employees, through a Workforce Training Fund Program grant since May 2018. The company provides paid work release to the workers who participate in the program, as well as work documents to Bristol Community College for them to contextualize the curriculum. Since the start of class, the company has promoted one individual due to her improved English communications skills and confidence.
Other businesses also recognized at the ENB Raising Our Voices breakfast for their support to the English language acquisition by the state immigrant workforce were: All Saints Development, LLC (Boston), Bon Me Foods, Inc. (Boston), Distron Corporation (North Attleborough), International Shoppes (Boston), Karl Storz Endovision, Inc. (Charlton), MIT’s Division of Comparative Medicine (Cambridge), Turning Point, Inc. (Newburyport), and Unifirst Corporation (Boston and Springfield).
English for New Bostonians works closely with employers to help them apply for funding available through the Workforce Training Fund and to identify partners that can conduct English classes that are customized to the needs of the business.
“With a tight labor market and over half a million Massachusetts residents who have limited English skills, there’s a strong case for businesses to invest in the English skills of their workforce. The results are better workplace communication, increased retention and greater ability to promote from within,” said Claudia Green, ENB’s Executive Director. “There is also a strong moral imperative, particularly given today’s climate: English classes pave the way to hope and opportunity for immigrant families.”
Businesses interested in learning more about organizing an English class in the workplace should contact Franklin Peralta at [email protected] or 617-982-6863.
ABOUT ENGLISH FOR NEW BOSTONIANS
ENB’s mission is to invest in the future of our region by creating opportunities for English language learners to pursue their educational, economic and civic aspirations.