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State Rep. Mickey Dollens of Oklahoma City requests Interim Study on public benefit jobs initiative

The City Sentinel, Staff Report 

OKLAHOMA CITY — An Oklahoma City state representative requested approval Monday for an interim study focused on providing avenues of assistance to income-insecure Oklahomans.

Rep. Mickey Dollens, D-Oklahoma City, submitted a request for a study to examine different ways the state could facilitate and promote public benefit work opportunities to assist income insecure individuals with instant financial stability and flexible work scheduling to help them maintain housing and transition back into permanent employment.

“If approved, we will attempt to tackle some of the biggest problems Oklahomans face,” Dollens said. “Low wages, predatory lending, recidivism, unpredictable and inconsistent work schedules; By connecting Oklahomans who are homeless or facing income insecurity with immediate public job opportunities, we can make a significant positive impact on our most vulnerable citizens while improving the community and putting tax dollars directly back into the local economy.”

Dollens sees these issues as the root cause of a lot of the subsequent issues lawmakers face each session.“By providing flexible public benefit work opportunities through partnerships with local nonprofits, our state can cut down on evictions, predatory lending and reliance on social safety nets,” Dollens said. 

“We can transfer funds instantly to workers who are short on cash at the end of the month and help those who are facing eviction so that families aren’t forced into the street. We can ensure that there is dignity in work for those who lose jobs to automation and job displacement or are just a couple hundred dollars short at the end of the month.”Interim studies are ultimately approved by the Speaker of the House.

“There is bipartisan support for Public-Private-Partnerships that can put Oklahomans back on their feet by providing an outlet for meaningful work that benefits the public good,” Dollens said. “I encourage the Speaker to approve this study, and I look forward to working with both Democrats and Republicans on finding solutions for Oklahoma’s workforce.”

Interim studies take place throughout the year between legislative sessions. Once the deadline has passed and studies have been announced, a complete list of interim studies can be found at www.okhouse.gov.

www.CapitolBeatOK.com

State Representative Mickey Dollens, D-Oklahoma City