Jobs-Plus

Jobs-Plus is a public housing-based employment program designed to increase the level of earnings and employment among residents of public housing. The program saturates targeted developments with job and career support, rent-based and other financial incentives that “make work pay,” and community organizing activities that support a culture of work. Jobs-Plus aims to increase earning and employment outcomes not merely for residents who directly receive program services, but for whole public housing communities.

Context
Evidence for Approach
Key Features
Budget and Outcomes
Timeline
Interested in Participating?

Context
Across NYCHA’s 334 public housing developments, 46 percent of working-age residents do not report income from employment and 84 percent of households earn below the average median income of New York City. These numbers reflect both weak attachment to the labor market and employment in low-wage jobs.

Evidence for Approach
From 1998 to 2003, MDRC in partnership with the Rockefeller Foundation and the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) conducted a large-scale demonstration project in six cities across the United States (Baltimore, Chattanooga, Dayton, Los Angeles, St. Paul, and Seattle) called Jobs-Plus.  The demonstration included a random assignment evaluation that found strong evidence that Jobs-Plus increases earnings for public housing residents. A 2010 MDRC report found that Jobs-Plus increased average earnings for residents of the target developments by 16% over a comparison group in developments in which Jobs-Plus was fully implemented. The effects of Jobs-Plus on earnings were sustained 3 years after the program ended and even grew somewhat.

Key Features

  • Employment and financial counseling services located inside or close to the target developments
  • Financial education, rent-based and other financial incentives that help “make work pay”
  • Community support for work that organizes neighbors to promote the benefits of working and serve as a support network for overcoming barriers

Budget and Outcomes
For the most recent figures from the past fiscal year, see the latest Social Innovation Fund data.

Timeline
This program was rigorously evaluated in several cities showing that, when properly implemented, the program can increase residents’ earnings by an average of 16 percent over seven years. On the basis of this evidence of effectiveness, CEO and City Agency partners established the first Jobs-Plus program in New York City in 2009. Shortly afterward, CEO replicated Jobs-Plus through its federal Social Innovation Fund partnership at additional sites in the Bronx and San Antonio, TX, in 2011. Recognizing the success of Jefferson Houses Jobs-Plus placing young adults into jobs, the Jobs-Plus program was expanded by CEO and the Young Men’s Initiative to seven new sites in 2013. Together, Jefferson Houses, the expansion sites, and the SIF sites represent ten Jobs-Plus programs across New York City and San Antonio. Jobs-Plus is currently being replicated nationwide by the federal government.

Interested in participating in Jobs-Plus?
CEO SIF-managed Jobs-Plus recruitment is ongoing in the following locations.

CEO and YMI also have Jobs Plus sites located at:

 

 

 

EVALUATION
 

While Jobs-Plus already had a strong evidence base, the SIF replications aim to demonstrate how Jobs-Plus can be implemented today in the face of new economic, institutional, and organizational contexts. These contexts include today’s relatively weak job market, a different environment for rent reform efforts within HUD, and an increase in scale.

 
MDRC 2010 (in PDF)