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Google pledges $1B to prepare workers for tech jobs

The initiative comes as Silicon Valley faces scrutiny over the implications of technology and automation on jobs.

Google CEO Sundar Pichai announced the new Grow with Google program.
Andrew Federman

Google says it doesn't want to leave anyone behind as technology changes the way people live and work. 

The search giant on Thursday introduced $1 billion in new initiatives aimed at training and educating workers to help them find jobs and grow their businesses. Google will spend the money over the next five years to fund grants to nonprofits globally as part of efforts to prepare people for the "changing nature of work."

CEO Sundar Pichai unveiled the programs during an event in Pittsburgh, joined by  Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf and Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto.

"We're always asking how we can make sure the opportunities created by new technology are available for everyone, in any city, in any state," Pichai said. "In asking that, we recognize that there are large gaps in opportunity across the U.S. These are tough gaps."

The initiative comes as tech giants in Silicon Valley face growing scrutiny over the implications of technology and automation on jobs and the workforce.

One of the initiatives, called Grow with Google, aims specifically to help US workers by giving them access to Google products and in-person training sessions. The company will host a tour of sessions, kicking off in Indianapolis, Indiana, on Nov 10 and 11.

Google also announced a partnership with Goodwill, including a $10 million grant. The partnership will have 1,000 Google workers train 1.2 million people in digital skills over the next three years. The company also said its employees will volunteer 1 million hours to organizations helping to train and educate people for work. 

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