The mission of the Pomona Economic Opportunity Center is to provide an opportunity for day laborers to find safe work at a fair wage, to organize and advocate for themselves in relation to policies that impact their lives, to obtain new trades and skills that improve their employability and quality of life, and to improve the overall conditions for all immigrant workers.
To achieve these goals the Center engages in a variety of activities including labor rights education and employer mediation, improving access to resources in the local community and building coalitions, providing educational opportunities on worker and immigrant rights, identifying training opportunities in work and language skills, development of strong day laborer leaders through organizing and trainings, and advocacy to promote or change policies that impact low-wage immigrant workers. In addition to its main site in Pomona, the PEOC organizes day laborers among informal street corners in the Inland Empire.
The City of Pomona, like other cities in Southern California and across the nation, has the challenge of assisting people seeking temporary employment. For a host of reasons, ranging from downsizing and layoffs to lack of education and professional skills, day labor is an option of last resort for individuals looking to support themselves and their families. Day labor is one last option many people have before opting to public assistance for their upkeep and well-being.
The City of Pomona has been key in the establishment and development of the Center, along with support from various private foundations including the Liberty Hill Foundation, the Catholic Campaign for Human Development, the Public Welfare Foundation, and The California Wellness Foundation.