Budget 2017 makes lifelong learning for a changing job market more affordable

MONTRÉAL, March 28, 2017 /CNW/ - Budget 2017 is the next step in the Government's long-term plan to create jobs and strengthen the middle class. Canada is home to a well-educated and highly skilled workforce, but as the demands of the workplace change, so too must the education and skills workers bring to their jobs. The changes in the economy—both here at home and around the world—present incredible opportunities for the middle class and those working hard to join it.

Today in Montréal, the Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Member of Parliament for Ahuntsic-Cartierville, on behalf of the Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour, announced Budget 2017 measures that will create opportunities for lifelong learning, so that the next job is also a better job.

Currently, unemployed workers taking self-funded training may become ineligible for Employment Insurance (EI) benefits if they are not available to accept work that becomes available. However, without EI benefits, many unemployed Canadians can't afford to pay the bills and support their families while also pursuing the training they need to improve their skills and find new work.

Budget 2017 will help unemployed adults go back to school while remaining eligible for the EI benefits they need to support themselves and their families. This means greater security for Canadian families when they need help the most and more flexibility to find better jobs through a combination of job search and training while unemployed.

In a spirit of renewed collaboration with the provinces and territories, the Government of Canada is also working with its counterparts, as well as the private sector, educational institutions, and not-for-profits, on a new organization that will:

  • apply evidence to identify the skills sought and required by Canadian employers;
  • explore new and innovative approaches to skills development; and
  • share information and analysis to help inform future evidence-based skills investments and programming.

Details on this new organization will be determined in the coming months.

As part of Canada's Innovation and Skills plan, Budget 2017 also proposes further measures encouraging life-long learning by expanding eligibility for post-secondary supports and working with provinces and territories to reform Labour Market Transfer Agreements, which will ensure that more Canadians get the assistance they need to find and keep good jobs in the new economy, and build better lives for themselves and their families.

Quotes

"Budget 2017 continues our plan to strengthen the middle class—the heart of Canada's economy. In a job market that's changing fast, lifelong learning matters. That's why we're helping people of all ages develop the skills they'll need to find and keep good, well-paying jobs."
– The Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour

"I am thrilled that our government's Budget 2017 investments will support learning and training for Canadians to continually adapt to an ever-changing economy and to be ready for jobs of tomorrow."
– The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Member of Parliament for Ahuntsic-Cartierville

"Recognized as the best hotel school in Canada, the Institut de tourisme et d'hôtellerie du Québec is proud to be involved with this initiative, supporting workforce development in the tourism and hospitality sectors by equipping people with the skills they need to integrate into a growing economy, with 50,000 jobs to be filled in the next 10 years. The Institut is a key partner for training tomorrow's workers in the development of new approaches and content based directly on the needs of the industry."
– The Honourable Liza Frulla, P.C., O.Q. and Executive Director of the Institut de tourisme et d'hôtellerie du Québec

Quick Facts

Budget 2017 will help more unemployed adults by providing $132.4 million over four years and $37.9 million per year ongoing to expand flexibilities within the Employment Insurance (EI) program so that eligible claimants can pursue self-funded training and maintain their EI status.
The Budget also proposes $225 million over four years and $75 million per year ongoing to create a new organization to support skills development and measurement in Canada.

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Budget 2017

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SOURCE Employment and Social Development Canada

For further information: For media enquiries, please contact: Matt Pascuzzo, Press Secretary, Office of the Honourable Patty Hajdu, P.C., M.P., Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour, matt.pascuzzo@hrsdc-rhdcc.gc.ca, 819-654-4183; Media Relations Office, Employment and Social Development Canada, 819-994-5559, media@hrsdc-rhdcc.gc.ca


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