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Lyft's 'Job Access Program' To Be Introduced In Pittsburgh

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) -- It is a bit of a Catch-22.

You need a job to make money, but you need money to get a job, even to get to an interview.

When you land the job, you need more money to get to and from the office or plant each day.

Now the ride-sharing company Lyft is stepping to provide temporary relief.

County Executive Rich Fitzgerald says there are many jobs out there and companies want to hire.

"There's a lot of jobs right now that employers are looking to hire people, and we need to connect them," he said.

Enter Lyft and it's job access program.

It is a pilot project designed to give discounted rides to work to PA Career Link participants.

Josh Huber, general manager, Pennsylvania for Lyft, said, "a lot of times there is a gap in income where they are not able to meet those transportation needs. So the point of this program is to help folks find that solution until they get income coming in so that they can really plan for their transportation needs."

It is a temporary solution, and it is not designed to be a permanent choice. After two weeks when the client receives his or her first paycheck, the benefit runs out.

The assumption is that with some money in their pocket, the new hire will be able to arrange for other ways to get to and from work.

Earl Buford is the CEO of Partner4Work, an agency that helps individuals deal with workforce issues.

"Employers who are looking for people can't find people, and individuals who are looking for jobs, they are like ships that pass in the night we call it," he said. "So one of the things we are trying to eradicate is making that connection so this transportation pilot is going to help with that."

Fitzgerald says Lyft is provided a big lift for people in the region.

"To have Lyft partner with some of our social service agencies, people like the United Way and others to be part of this, is really exciting," he said. "It opens the door and gives people an opportunity, a leg up if you will."

Lyft rolled out the program two months ago in select cities, and Huber says Pittsburgh soon will be part of it.

"We have launched with a number of organizations across the country and it has been a very positive response."

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