Senator Montgomery’s "New York State YouthBuild Act" (S.8073A/A.13A) Passes Senate

Senator Montgomery with Perry Stephenson and Jon Burke from DREAMS YouthBuild.

Senator Montgomery’s "New York State YouthBuild Act" (S.8073A/A13A) passes in the Senate.

While YouthBuild programs already exist as non-profit entities, Senator Montgomery's legislation would create a codified, comprehensive statutory structure for supporting YouthBuild programs in the state of New York. The Commissioner of Labor would establish a competitive grant program from amounts provided by appropriation, and would make grants eligible to applicants who operated a YouthBuild program compliant with terms established in this bill. Any not-for-profit private agency or public agency operating a YouthBuild program or with a plan to incubate a YouthBuild program would be an eligible agency, provided that such entities are licensed affiliates of YouthBuild USA or otherwise receive grants from the Department of Labor.

YouthBuild is a comprehensive youth employment program that focuses on education, job training, leadership development, community service and the cultivation of life skills for young adults in New York State.  YouthBuild engages low-income, out-of-school youth for a two-year, all-inclusive process to earn high school equivalency (HSE), acquire job skills, certifications, and leadership competencies. Youthbuild is also one of the most effective and successful youth diversion programs in New York State.

YouthBuild provides opportunities for follow-up, placement services and stipends to out-of-school, out-of-work youth, aged 16-24, as well as ongoing placement services and support for thousands of YouthBuild alumni. YouthBuild students also receive vocational training and certifications, including construction, green industry training, OSHA, CPR, building maintenance, IT, health care, security, barista (Starbucks), food-handlers certification, retail and hospitality, etc. Additionally, Youthbuild students deliver hundreds of hours of community service while producing and preserving affordable housing in their communities. Since 1994, 41,000 units of affordable housing have been produced or upgraded by 150,000 YouthBuild students across the US. Over 5,000 of those students have been New Yorkers.

For more information about the DREAMS Youthbuild program located in Brooklyn, call 718.455.4308 or visit

For more information about the NYS YouthBuild Coalition, contact: Bonnie Landi, Chair, NYS YouthBuild Coalition: 845/339-2757, or

To learn more about YouthBuilds and the programs offered by each site, download Senator Montgomery's Guide to New York State YouthBuild programs. For more information about Senator Montgomery's work on this issue, visit: