Government of Canada helps people with disabilities in the Edmunston area gain job skills

EDMUNSTON, NB, May 13, 2013 /CNW/ - The Government of Canada will be helping people with disabilities in the Edmundston area gain the skills they need to find a job. The announcement was made today by the Honourable Bernard Valcourt, Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development and MP for Madawaska-Restigouche, on behalf of the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development.

"People with disabilities face special challenges entering the job market and that's why partnerships with organizations like Atelier Tournesol are so important. Our government's top priorities are job creation and economic growth. To support Canada's long-term prosperity, we must ensure that everyone who wants to work has the opportunity," said Minister Valcourt.

Atelier Tournesol is receiving over $79,000 from the federal Opportunities Fund for Persons with Disabilities to help people with disabilities overcome obstacles to employment.

Participants will attend skill-development workshops on topics such as effective communication, résumé writing and preparing for interviews. They will also get work experience, supervised by an instructor, where they will be able to apply the techniques and strategies learned during the workshops. All these activities are aimed at enabling participants to obtain or retain suitable employment.

"We would like to thank Minister Valcourt for the commitment he has shown and the energy he has devoted to the integration of people who face obstacles to employment," said Danny Bérubé, the executive director of Atelier Tournesol. "This program will help them to improve their employability skills and acquire the tools they need to enter the workforce. Those who are the most disadvantaged welcome the opportunity to make a difference in society and have a sense of belonging."

Canadians with disabilities have a tremendous amount to offer employers, but they remain under-represented in the workforce. That is why, in Economic Action Plan 2013, the federal government proposes to maintain ongoing funding at $40 million per year for the Opportunities Fund for Persons with Disabilities, starting in 2015-2016, to help more people with disabilities train for in-demand jobs. Employers and community organizations will be involved in project design and delivery.

Economic Action Plan 2013 introduces other measures to assist persons with disabilities, including a new generation of Labour Market Agreements for Persons with Disabilities, extending funding to the Enabling Accessibility Fund to improve accessibility to facilities, and research on the labour market participation of people with disabilities.

In addition, Economic Action Plan 2012 announced the creation of a Panel on Labour Market Opportunities for Persons with Disabilities. The Panel identified private sector successes and best practices in employing, retaining and accommodating Canadians with disabilities in the workforce, and better connecting these workers with potential employers. Based on the Panel's recommendations, Economic Action Plan 2013 proposes to provide a $2 million investment to support the creation of a Canadian forum for employers on disability to facilitate education, training and the sharing of resources and best practices on the hiring and retention of people with disabilities.


The Opportunities Fund for Persons with Disabilities assists people with disabilities to prepare for, obtain and retain employment or become self-employed.

For more information or to submit a project, consult the following site:

In Economic Action Plan 2013, the Government of Canada proposes new measures to connect Canadians with available jobs and equip them with the skills and training they need. These measures include the Canada Job Grant, creating job opportunities for apprentices and providing support to under-represented groups, including people with disabilities, Aboriginal people, newcomers and youth.

Economic Action Plan 2013 proposes the following measures:

  • introducing 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;
  • expanding the scope of the Enabling Accessibility Fund by increasing its funding to $15 million per year to support capital costs of construction and renovations to improve accessibility to facilities for persons with disabilities, including workplace accommodation; and
  • funding of $7 million per year for the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRCC) to support research related to labour market participation of persons with disabilities and other activities.


SOURCE: Canada's Economic Action Plan

For further information:

For more information, contact:

Jan O'Driscoll
Press Secretary
Office of Minister Finley

Media Relations Office
Human Resources and
Skills Development Canada

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Canada's Economic Action Plan

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