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We are at a critical moment for emerging industries—such as electric vehicles, batteries, and offshore wind manufacturing—and the U.S. is investing trillions of public dollars to build up high-road domestic manufacturing. Community benefits agreements (CBAs) provide a way for workers, families, and their communities to participate in and shape the energy transition; and industry leaders can demonstrate their commitment to responsible community, environmental, and labor practices by signing a strong CBA.


At Jobs to Move America, we work to advance equitable family-sustaining jobs, expand access to training for historically underrepresented groups, and ensure long-term and sustainable benefits for workers and communities when public dollars are spent. CBAs are a tool to ensure concrete benefits for workers and communities. JMA has successfully negotiated CBAs that create high-quality, inclusive jobs in the manufacturing sector.

The Community Benefits Agreement Resource Center (CBARC) is a unique program of JMA that seeks to meet this critical moment and advance the negotiation of effective and equitable CBAs.

JMA’s CBARC program serves these primary purposes:

  • Assist communities in negotiating enforceable CBAs that address community and labor priorities
  • Organize community coalitions to collectively negotiate high-road agreements with companies
  • Conduct and share research with stakeholders on CBAs, including benefits, best practices, and case studies
  • Engage with high-road manufacturing companies to negotiate CBAs with communities

What is a CBA?

Community benefits agreements (CBAs) are legally enforceable agreements between private companies and coalitions of community and labor groups. CBAs are used to ensure a wide range of high-road job standards, community benefits, environmental mitigations, and equity measures. 

Benefits of CBAs:

  • CBAs foster collaboration between project developers, operators, workers, and the community. 
  • CBAs promote sustainability and help maximize the benefits that surrounding communities, workers, and their families receive.
  • CBAs are the preferred method of the Department of Energy to demonstrate project benefits and community and labor support.
  • CBAs involve stakeholders in helping companies recruit, train, and retain workers and create pathways for a highly skilled and diverse workforce that is representative of the community.

CBAs in Action

Our CBA with electric bus builder New Flyer: In 2022, Jobs to Move America and the Alabama Coalition for Community Benefits signed a community benefits agreement with New Flyer, the largest electric bus manufacturer in North America, for its facilities in Anniston, Alabama, and Ontario, California.

Our CBA with electric bus builder BYD: In 2017, BYD Motors became the first electric bus manufacturer to enter a CBA when it signed an agreement with JMA’s coalition and SMART Local 105. The CBA resulted in the country’s first electric bus manufacturing apprenticeship program.


Jay Mehta, CBARC Manager

Caroline Casteel, CBARC National Lead Organizer 

Athena Last, CBARC Senior Research Fellow

Valerie Lizárraga, Assistant National Program Director