December 20, 2019
Congratulations to member First Step Staffing on its expansion to southern California!
First Step has acquired a portion of OS4 Labor, a for-profit staffing agency with expertise in temporary, long-term and direct hire staffing that will become part of First Step’s non-profit social enterprise. OS4 Labor will continue operating in the rest of its markets under the OS4 Labor brand.
The acquisition gives First Step access to nearly 2,000 positions, primarily with customers in the light industrial and logistics sectors. Previously, First Step completed similar mergers in its headquarters city of Atlanta (December 2015) and Philadelphia (January 2018).
First Step employs over 1,100 men and women each week and in 2019 will pay $34 million in wages, enabling many of its workers to take their first steps on the path out of homelessness. With the California acquisition, First Step expects to nearly double its impact in 2020.
First Step is adding five offices in Los Angeles, Orange and San Bernardino Counties and has begun working with local organizations that refer candidates for job openings and provide supports to ensure they are work-ready. Partners include LA County’s Workforce Development, Aging & Community Services department (WDACS), San Bernardino County agencies, the Los Angeles Union Rescue Mission, Long Beach Mission, and Homeboy Industries.
To further support candidates’ success, First Step provides ongoing job coaching, access to robust transportation supports and help with other basic needs such as housing and mental health service referrals.
The California acquisition was financed by Nonprofit Finance Fund (NFF) and its lending partners Reinvestment Fund, REDF Impact Investing Fund and Dignity Health, with additional early financial support from WDACS and San Bernardino County.
“Our team has been working diligently with the owners of OS4 Labor and our collaborative funding partners, led by NFF and others, to execute this deal for nearly two years,” said First Step founder and chairman Greg Block. “With Los Angeles and surrounding counties facing epic numbers of homeless citizens, we believe that the jobs and income First Step can provide will be a critical component on a path to self-sufficiency. The local government leadership has been extremely welcoming and supportive of our efforts, and we look forward to working together to make a dramatic impact in the coming years.”
We invite you to read the full press release for more details.