Career transition programs place thousands of feds in new jobs

More than 60 percent of federal employees displaced by downsizing or restructuring in fiscal 2000 found jobs elsewhere in the government, thanks to career transition assistance programs, according to new data from the Office of Personnel Management. In 1995, President Clinton directed agencies to give special selection status to employees displaced by government downsizing and to develop transition assistance programs to help them get back on their feet. The first set of regulations took effect in February 1996. Displaced employee programs already in use were temporarily suspended in favor of two new programs aimed at helping displaced employees take charge of their job searches.

Last August, OPM made the new programs permanent. The programs, known as the Career Transition Assistance Plan and the Interagency Career Transition Plan, together helped place 2,768 executive branch employees in other federal jobs in fiscal 2001, according to OPM.

At the Defense Department, 2,272 employees were placed in new Defense jobs agency in fiscal 2001. Since their inception, the programs have placed more than 30,000 employees in new jobs-- almost half of those eligible for assistance. During the same time period, 24,601 federal employees were let go through reductions in force. The report is available at the OPM Web site.

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