VANCOUVER, March 26, 2013 /CNW/ - The Honourable Alice Wong, Minister of
State (Seniors) and Member of Parliament for Richmond, British
Columbia, today highlighted Economic Action Plan 2013 measures that
will address Canada's overall skills and labour shortages and transform
the way Canadians receive skills training, in her remarks at the
Canadian Tourism College in Vancouver, British Columbia.
"While our economy continues to grow and create jobs, the global economy
remains fragile and a growing mismatch exists between available jobs
and those looking for work," said Minister Wong. "By helping Canadians
connect with available jobs and putting a new focus on skills and
training, we are ensuring continued economic growth, job creation and
Economic Action Plan 2013 announces specific new measures to address
skills mismatches and labour shortages. These include:
Introducing the new Canada Job Grant through renewed Labour Market
Agreements, which will transform the way Canadians receive training by
placing skills training decisions in the hands of employers and
Canadian workers. The new Grant will provide $15,000 or more per
person, with a maximum federal contribution of $5,000. It will also
ensure greater involvement and engagement of employers in training
Canadians for the jobs that are in demand.
Working with the provinces and territories to harmonize requirements to
help apprentices obtain their accreditation and create opportunities,
as part of addressing shortages in skilled trades across the country.
Providing support to groups that are under-represented in the job
market, such as people with disabilities, youth, Aboriginal people and
"The quality of our workforce must remain one of our greatest
strengths," added Minister Wong. "By governments, businesses,
universities, colleges, unions, training institutions and other groups
working together, we can make this happen."
Economic Action Plan 2013 offers a path to return to balanced budgets by
2015-16, which will strengthen Canada's fiscal advantage and spur
long-term jobs and growth.
For more information, visit www.actionplan.gc.ca.
Canada Job Grant
The Canada Job Grant will ensure Canadians are able to obtain the
qualifications they need to get jobs in high-demand fields. The Grant
will provide $15,000 or more per person, including a maximum $5,000
federal contribution and matching contributions from provinces,
territories and employers. Businesses with a plan to train Canadians
for an existing job or a better job will be eligible to apply for a
Canada Job Grant. Upon full implementation, nearly 130 000 Canadians
each year are expected to be able to access the training they need to
obtain employment or improve their skills for in-demand jobs. The
Canada Job Grant will be introduced in 2014-15 as part of the renewal
of the Labour Market Agreements.
Opportunities for Apprentices
To further reduce barriers to accreditation in the skilled trades in
Canada and increase opportunities for apprentices, the Government will
work with provinces and territories to harmonize requirements for
apprentices, and examine the use of practical hands-on tests as a
method of assessment, in targeted skilled trades. This will support
more apprentices in completing their training and encourage mobility
across the country.
In addition, the Government will support the use of apprentices in
federal construction and maintenance contracts. The Government will
also ensure that funds transferred to provinces and territories through
the Investment in Affordable Housing Program support the use of
apprentices. As part of the new Building Canada plan for
infrastructure, the Government will encourage provinces, territories
and municipalities to support the use of apprentices in infrastructure
projects receiving federal funding.
Support for Under-represented Groups
Economic Action Plan 2013 will also support labour market participation
and a more inclusive skilled workforce with a range of measures
An introduction of a new generation of Labour Market Agreements for
Persons with Disabilities with an investment of $222 million per year
to better meet the employment needs of Canadian businesses and improve
the employment prospects for people with disabilities;
A reallocation $19 million over two years to promote education in
high-demand fields, including the skilled trades, science, technology,
engineering and mathematics;
Investing $70 million over three years to support an additional 5 000
paid internships for recent post-secondary graduates, ensuring they get
the valuable hands-on work experience needed to transition into the
Dedicating $241 million over five years to improve the on-reserve Income
Assistance Program to help ensure Aboriginal youth can access the
skills and training they need to secure employment.
Maintaining funding at $40 million per year, starting in 2015-16, for
the Opportunities Fund for Persons with Disabilities. The program will
also be reformed to provide more demand-driven training solutions for
persons with disabilities and make it more responsive to labour market
needs. Employers and community organizations will be involved in
project design and delivery.
Extending the Enabling Accessibility Fund on an ongoing basis, at a
level of $15 million per year, to support capital costs of construction
and renovations to improve physical accessibility for persons with
disabilities, including workplace accommodation.
For more information about these initiatives, visit www.actionplan.gc.ca
SOURCE: Human Resources and Skills Development Canada
For further information:
Director of Communications
Office of Minister Finley
Media Relations Office
Human Resources and Skills
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This news release is available online at: www.actionplan.gc.ca.