KENORA, ON, Aug. 8, 2014 /CNW/ - The Honourable Jason Kenney, Minister
of Employment and Social Development, and the Honourable Greg Rickford,
Minister of Natural Resources and Minister for the Federal Economic
Development Initiative for Northern Ontario, today held discussions
with Aboriginal and industry leaders on how to increase jobs and
opportunities for Aboriginal people.
The roundtables in Northern Ontario are part of a series of roundtables
taking place across Canada with Aboriginal organizations and employers
about the need to fill skills shortages and to ensure that federal
investments in Aboriginal training is providing Aboriginal peoples with
the skills they need in today's economy.
Many of the hundreds of resource projects set to come online in the
coming years are near Aboriginal communities, providing tremendous jobs
opportunities for Aboriginal peoples in Canada. Ensuring that
Aboriginal peoples have the skills required to fill these jobs will
help employers address the skills shortage they are facing and improve
the economic and social wellbeing of Aboriginal peoples in Canada.
The natural resource industry currently supports 32,000 Aboriginal
jobs—making natural resources the largest employer of Aboriginal people
According to the Conference Board of Canada, Ontario is losing out on as
much as $24.3 billion in economic activity because employers cannot
find people with the skills they need.
Increased retirement in the Ontario construction industry will result in
the need to replace as many as 83,000 skilled workers over the next
Copper, nickel, zinc, gold and chromite deposits worth up to $60 billion
have been discovered in Northern Ontario.
"As the youngest and fastest-growing segment of the population,
Aboriginal people are a critical part of our future prosperity. These
roundtables are an opportunity for our government to hear first-hand
from Aboriginals and employers on ways to better help Aboriginal people
secure meaningful employment and build better futures for themselves
and their communities."
- The Honourable Jason Kenney, Minister of Employment and Social
"Given the proximity of many Aboriginal communities to large economic
projects, there is a tremendous opportunity to address some of Canada's
skills shortages, while improving economic opportunities for Aboriginal
people. That's why our government is taking action to help Aboriginal
people get the skills and experience needed to find and keep jobs,
including in Ontario's mining industry."
- The Honourable Greg Rickford, Minister of Natural Resources, Minister
for the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario
and Member of Parliament for Kenora.
Aboriginal Labour Market Programs
ESDC has three Aboriginal labour market programs:
Aboriginal Skills and Employment Training Strategy supports 85 Aboriginal organizations throughout Canada that deliver
skills training and support services to prepare First Nations, Métis
and Inuit people to succeed in the workforce.
Skills and Partnership Fund is a fund that encourages Aboriginal organizations to create
partnerships with government, business and community organizations to
provide skills training and create job opportunities for Aboriginal
First Nations Job Fund: Through Economic Action Plan 2013, the Government of Canada improved
the on-reserve Income Assistance Program. A key component of this
initiative is the First Nations Job Fund. The Job Fund provides
personalized job training to young Income Assistance recipients in
participating communities to enable them to develop the right skills to
For more information, please visit: www.esdc.gc.ca/eng/jobs/aboriginal/index.shtml.
SOURCE: Employment and Social Development Canada
For further information:
Office of the Minister
Media Relations Office
Employment and Social Development Canada
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