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PG&E workers discuss several ways the company is reaching out and helping the community. From left to right: Martha Espinoza, Fiona Chan, Monica Tell, Mario Rendon, Tom Munson, Alinda Martinez, Regina Saldana

Osvaldo Castillo
El Observador
On Friday, Sept 21st, PG&E held a media roundtable to provide direct dialogue with PG&E to address any PG&E related issues affecting the Latino communities.
“The purpose of this media roundtable is to build relationships with our community,” said Monica Tell, External Communications at PG&E. “We want to make ourselves more accessible to the community.
One of the ways that PG&E has reached out to the community is by creating the PowerPathway program, which is a collaborative workforce model producing the skilled and diverse workers needed by PG&E and the energy and utilities industry.
“The program was started in 2007 because we needed to have the next wave of workers ready to go,” said Mario Rendon, Principal Program Manager, Workforce Development at PG&E. “We have been working with several organizations and schools to find workers. We want our workers to reflect the population that we serve.
The program not only helps by employing people from the local community, but by providing them with skills such as basic interviewing skills, resume skills and physical conditioning.
“We are starting to see our investment pay off because people are starting to stay with us,” Rendon said.
PowerPathway has made a commitment to the Clinton Global Initiative of America to contribute to the national rollout of an energy literacy curriculum to educational institutions, at no cost, for integration into high schools’ current science, technology, engineering and mathematics frameworks.
Veterans are also receiving employment help from PG&E. The company was one of five utility companies across the U.S. invited to take part in a nationwide initiative designed to build awareness of opportunities available in the utilities sector, that match skills learned during military service, and unify existing veterans-oriented vocational training programs from around the country.
The PG&E roundtable also discussed ways for people and businesses to save money on their electricity bill.
Some of the No-Cost Measure recommended by PG&E were; Turn off equipment when not in use, close curtains, shades and blinds at night during unoccupied periods of the day, and on weekends, in order to maintain comfortable room temperatures and lower heating and cooling cost, clean dusty diffusers and lamps every 6 to 12 months for improved lumen output from your lighting fixtures, and use cooking equipment to capacity.
Finally, the roundtable discussed safety and what the company has been doing to keep people from getting hurt in case of a disaster such as the San Bruno pipeline explosion of 2010.
“We are trying to become more transparent with our first responders,” said Tom Munson, Public Safety Supervisor at PG&E. “Our first responders need to know how to respond properly.


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