YELLOWKNIFE, June 27, 2018 /CNW/ - By investing directly in Canada's greatest asset—its resilient, hardworking people—the Government of Canada is helping to ensure that the economic growth we create is the kind of growth that works for everyone.
Today, Michael Mcleod, Member of Parliament for Northwest Territories, on behalf of the Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour announced that the governments of Canada and Northwest Territories have signed agreements that will see Canada provide Northwest Territories with over $46 million over six years to invest in Northwest Territories workers. These agreements represent an increase in funding of nearly $4 million over the period, compared to previous funding levels, and helping an estimated 1,300 more workers in Northwest Territories over the six years.
Speaking at the Native Women's Association of the Northwest Territories, MP Mcleod said that these agreements will significantly increase the jobs and skills training available to people in Northwest Territories, including pre-employment and training readiness, upskilling, academic upgrading and more.
Through these new agreements, the Government of Canada is ensuring more people benefit from these programs than before—including people from groups typically under‑represented in our workforce, such as people with disabilities, women and Indigenous people.
As innovation and technology continue to change how we live and work, people in Northwest Territories, and all people across Canada are met with new challenges and new opportunities. That is why it is more important than ever before to ensure everybody has the opportunity to benefit from an innovation-driven economy—and that means ensuring that both employed and unemployed people have opportunities to acquire the skills they will need for the jobs of today as well as the jobs of tomorrow.
The agreements announced today are the new Workforce Development Agreement (WDA) and the Labour Market Development Agreement (LMDA). In the first two years Northwest Territories will receive over $15 million—more than $6 million through the WDA and more than $9 million through the LMDA.
Results matter. These agreements include a commitment to performance measurement that allow Canada and Northwest Territories to measure how programs are increasing people's earnings, helping them get jobs that last, and breaking down barriers for under‑represented groups like Indigenous people, people with disabilities and women. The Government of Canada will be reporting to Canadians on the impacts of these programs, so that they are transparent and so that they can be continually improved.
The WDA will help individuals, employers and organizations in the Northwest Territories through the delivery of training and services, such as:
- Skills Development Program;
- Employee Training Program; and,
- Community Training Partnerships.
Funding under the LMDA will allow Northwest Territories to help individuals, employers and organizations to meet their needs, though measures such as:
- Skills Development Program;
- Employment Assistance Services; and,
- Job Creation Partnerships.
Every Canadian deserves a fair and equal chance at success in the workforce. Through smart investments like the provincial agreements announced today, we can strengthen our middle class and help more of the people working so hard to join it.
"It is essential that all Canadians get training and develop new job skills throughout their work life in order to keep up with the changing workplace and as our economy grows. Through investments like today's agreement with Northwest Territories, we are ensuring Canada's most valuable asset, our people, are well prepared by being innovative, flexible and adaptive to enjoy economic success and build toward a future. When we give people the tools to succeed, our middle class grows stronger and our workers create a better future for themselves and their families."
– The Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour
"A strong labour market is critical to the Northwest Territories' economic future and a primary focus for the Government of the Northwest Territories. These strengthened agreements will help employers to find and train the workers they need and assist individuals to access the skills upgrading programs and supports they need to secure employment and advance in the labour market.""
– The Honourable Caroline Cochrane Minister of Education, Culture and Employment, Minister Responsible for the Status of Women for Northwest Territories
"To drive the kind of economic growth that is inclusive and builds up our economy, we need to invest in people. Our government committed to do just that, and we are delivering with $4 million more in funding to help 1,300 more people get the skills they need to do well."
– The Honourable Michael McLeod, Member of Parliament for Northwest Territories
- The Government of Canada transfers nearly $3 billion annually to provinces and territories to support employment and skills training programs. Through Budget 2017, the Government is investing an additional $2.7 billion from 2017–18 to 2022–23:
- $900 million over a period of six years (in addition to the $722 million provided annually) in new WDAs that consolidate the Canada Job Fund Agreements, the Labour Market Agreements for Persons with Disabilities and the Targeted Initiative for Older Workers (expired in March 2017); and
- $1.8 billion over six years in amended LMDAs to provinces and territories.
- In total, from 2017–18 to 2022–23, the Government will invest approximately $20 billion in WDAs and LMDAs with provinces and territories.
- Through these agreements, provincial and territorial governments will have greater flexibility in the design and delivery of programming and services to respond to the diverse and emerging needs of Canadians.
- The LMDAs and WDAs include a commitment to strong performance measurement. Canada and NWT will work together to measure how programs are increasing people's earnings, helping them get jobs that last, and breaking down barriers for under‑represented groups like Indigenous people, people with disabilities and women. Canada and NWT will report to Canadians on the impacts of these programs to support continuous improvement.
Changing demands of the workplace
Canada is home to a well-educated and highly skilled workforce, but rapid technological change and globalization are accelerating the need to learn and develop new skills. As the demands of the workplace change, so too must the skills that workers bring to their jobs. The Government of Canada is taking action to ensure that both employers and governments are more responsive to workers' needs.
The new and amended agreements followed broad-based consultations with more than 700 stakeholders on how to expand and improve skills training and employment supports for Canadians.
Workforce Development Agreements
The new Workforce Development Agreements (WDAs) consolidate the Canada Job Fund Agreements, the Labour Market Agreements for Persons with Disabilities and the former Targeted Initiative for Older Workers. In addition to the $722 million provided annually to provinces and territories under the WDAs, Budget 2017 added $900 million over a period of six years from 2017–18 to 2022–23. The new funding will also support provincial and territorial employment programming for older workers, which was previously supported by the Targeted Initiative for Older Workers.
Through these agreements, the Government is providing Canadians with more opportunities to upgrade their skills, gain experience or get help to start their own business. The agreements also mean more support, such as employment counselling, to help Canadians plan their careers.
Labour Market Development Agreements
Labour Market Development Agreements (LMDAs) are bilateral agreements with each province and territory to design and deliver employment programming similar to Employment Benefits and Support Measures outlined in Part II of the Employment Insurance Act. LMDAs help unemployed Canadians quickly find and return to work. They also ensure a skilled labour force that meets current and emerging needs of employers.
Budget 2017 measures to expand eligibility to help more Canadians access skills training and employment assistance under the amended LMDAs include:
- investing an additional $1.8 billion in LMDAs over six years;
- broadening eligibility for Employment Benefits (e.g. skills training, wage subsidies) to include unemployed individuals who have made minimum Employment Insurance premium contributions in at least 5 of the last 10 years;
- expanding eligibility for Employment Assistance Services (e.g. employment counselling, job search assistance), currently available to unemployed Canadians, to also include employed Canadians; and
- increasing flexibility for provinces and territories to support employer-sponsored training under Labour Market Partnerships (e.g. to help employers who need to upskill or retrain their workers in order to adjust to technological or structural changes in the economy).
These agreements represent an increase in funding of $2.7 billion over the period, compared to previous funding levels. This increase means an estimated 730,000 more workers will benefit over the six years.
More recently, in Budget 2018, the Government of Canada announced an additional $80 million in 2018–19 and $150 million in 2019–20 to work with key provinces to find local solutions to help support seasonal workers in the off-season.
SOURCE Employment and Social Development Canada
For further information: Media enquiries: Carlene Variyan, Director of Communications, Office of the Honourable Patty Hajdu, P.C., M.P., Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour, [email protected], 819-654-5611; Media Relations Office, Employment and Social Development Canada, 819-994-5559, [email protected]; Charlotte Digness, Media and Communications Coordinator, Cabinet Communications and Protocol, Government of the Northwest Territories, 867-767-9140 x 11092, [email protected]