Rapid Response

Authorized under the Workforce Investment Act, Rapid Response is an early intervention program that provides services for dislocated workers affected by layoffs or closures within the state, regardless of the reasons.

The response is a collaborative effort involving representatives of many organizations including local workforce development boards, the N.C. Employment Security Commission/JobLink Career Centers, N.C. Community Colleges, economic development and social services.

The team can advise your company on strategies to:

  • Ensure maximum goodwill in a difficult situation
  • Achieve completion of production
  • Share experiences from similar events
  • Offer specialized assistance such as job fairs, financial planning workshops and interest/aptitude assessments or other specialized services.

The Department of Commerce’s Rapid Response Team initiates contact with an employer as soon as it receives a notice of any substantial layoff or plant closure as required by the Worker Adjustment Retraining Notification (WARN) Act, and assembles the rapid response team.

Rapid response services are provided to workers and employers regardless of the reason for dislocation including:

  • Trade
  • Downsizing/restructuring
  • Federal action impacting defense, timber or fishing industries
  • Natural disaster
  • Plant relocation
  • Bankruptcy, etc.

Rapid Response Activities Include:

Establishing contact with the employer within a short period of time (preferably 48 hours or less) after notice/information received, to provide information on and access to all available public programs and services.

Providing core services to dislocated workers including all services under the Dislocated Workers Program

Developing a plan to access funds and services for worker assistance (as eligibility permits), including TAA and NAFTA-TAA entitlements (if workers are trade-certified), Pell grants and Workforce Investment Act funds to initiate/supplement or to provide necessary services for eligible dislocated workers.

For further information about the Rapid Response program, contact the Division of Workforce Solutions at (800) 562-6333 or (919) 661-6010 or write:

N.C. Department of Commerce
Division of Workforce Solutions
Attn: Rapid Response
4316 Mail Service Center
Raleigh, N.C. 27699-4316

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