KAMLOOPS, BC, March 5, 2019 /CNW/ - A strong economy depends on a strong middle class where everybody has a fair chance at success. Despite being the fastest growing segment of the country's population, Indigenous people continue to be under-represented in Canada's workforce. Today, the Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour, highlighted the work being done by the Shuswap Nation Tribal Council to help Indigenous people train for good quality jobs.
An Aboriginal Skills and Employment Training Strategy partner since 2010, the Shuswap Nation Tribal Council has received a total of $31.3 million, which has helped more than 7,800 Indigenous people get skills training and job opportunities in areas that include forestry, fire-fighting, construction, tourism, hospitality, health and fisheries.
The Government of Canada continues to work closely with Indigenous partners to bring forward meaningful changes to training programs for Indigenous people. Following a historic Budget 2018 investment of $2 billion over five years and over $400 million per year ongoing, a new Indigenous Skills and Employment Training Program will launch April 1, 2019 with a distinctions-based approach to better meet the needs of First Nations, Inuit, Métis and urban/non-affiliated Indigenous people.
"The Government is committed to a renewed nation-to-nation relationship with Indigenous people, one that is framed by principles of reconciliation. Establishing strong partnerships with Indigenous organizations like the partnership with the Shuswap Nation Tribal Council is helping to ensure better outcomes for Indigenous peoples for generations to come."
– The Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour and Member of Parliament for Thunder Bay–Superior North
"This commitment will play a key role in shaping the future for our people and Canada. This partnership provides better opportunities for families by giving them the necessary tools to support themselves and the future of their children. The success of our program is how we work together utilizing the strength of our culture, values and identity to help our people gain the skillsets needed to enter into the labour market."
- Kukpi7 Wayne Christian, Tribal Chair, Shuswap Nation Tribal Council
- The Indigenous population is young and is the fastest growing population in Canada. More than 400,000 Indigenous youth will be of age to enter the job market over the next decade.
- The Government of Canada's goal is to reduce the skills gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people by 50%, and the employment gap by 25%.
- The ASETS delivery organizations, along with the Skills and Partnership Fund, have helped more than 400,000 Indigenous people find employment or return to school.
- Overall, labour market conditions have improved for Indigenous peoples. According to the Fall Economic Statement 2018, the employment rate for Indigenous people who live off reserve increased by 2.6 percentage points from 2016 to 2018.
Aboriginal Skills and Employment Training Strategy
Launched in 2010, the Aboriginal Skills and Employment Training Strategy (ASETS) provides a full suite of skills development and job training services—from essential skills such as literacy and numeracy to more advanced training for in-demand jobs. ASETS supports a network of 85 delivery organizations that design and deliver programming based on the needs and priorities of Indigenous people and communities through more than 600 points of service across Canada. It is a responsive, flexible and innovative strategy that meets the unique needs of Indigenous people.
In 2016 and 2017, the Government engaged with Indigenous peoples and organizations across the country to review and renew Indigenous labour market programs. Following extensive engagement, the Government and Indigenous partners are working on the co-development and implementation of the new Indigenous Skills and Employment Training (ISET) Program to replace ASETS.
The new ISET Program will continue to help Indigenous people get the skills training they need to participate in the economy and contribute to the success of their communities. The ISET Program will take a distinctions-based approach to recognize the unique needs of First Nations, Métis, Inuit and urban/non-affiliated Indigenous people.
Skills and Partnership Fund
The Skills and Partnership Fund (SPF) was launched in 2010 as an innovative, partnership-driven complement to ASETS. The SPF is a demand-driven, proposal-based program that encourages partnerships between Indigenous organizations and governments, businesses, training institutions and/or community groups to support skills development for Indigenous people. The SPF can address labour market shortages and economic opportunities by offering specific skills development and training-to-employment to Indigenous clients.
In 2015, the SPF was renewed, and it now receives $50 million in funding per year. A 2016 SPF call for proposals resulted in 52 partnership-based Indigenous projects focused on improving employment outcomes.
SOURCE Employment and Social Development Canada
For further information: For media enquiries, please contact: Véronique Simard, Press Secretary, 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]