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Senior Community Services Employment Program (SCSEP)

The Senior Community Service Employment Program began as part of the War on Poverty 40 years ago and was so successful that it became a national program under the Older Americans Act in 1973.  It is referred to by its acronym - SCSEP and operates in nearly every county in the nation.  To participate in SCSEP, a person must be: 


  • Age 55 or older;

  • Legally eligible to work in the United States; and,

  • Living in a household with income no more than 125 percent of the federal poverty level. 


Priority enrollment:  


  • Age 65 years or older;

  • Have a disability;

  • Have limited English proficiency or low literacy skills;

  • Reside in a rural area;

  • A veteran;

  • Have low employment prospects; and,

  • Homeless or at-risk of homelessness.


SCSEP particpants are provided a minimum wage while learning new skills and improving their opportunity to become gainflly employed.  Employment training takes place in a non-profit and government agencies, such as libraries, senior centers, schools, and parks.  The program provides a win-win situation for participants and their communities.  Participants help community organizations expand their service capacity while developing their job skills, self-confidence and a restored sense of self-worth.


SCSEP benefits to community service and government agencies:


  • Increased capacity to provide additional services.

  • Agencies may try out a potential employee.

  • Possible increase in productivity.


SCSEP benefits to employers:


  • Reduced training costs.

  • Money to try out a potential employee for one full month at no cost.

  • Pool of experienced, dependable and qualified candidates


For more information about SCSEP, contact the U.S. Department of Labor at:  www.doleta.gov/seniors