Government of Canada supports training and skills development opportunities
for Aboriginal people in construction

MASHTEUIATSH, QC, Nov. 13 /CNW Telbec/ - The Government of Canada is providing 510 Aboriginal people with the opportunity to obtain experience and training in the construction industry through a new partnership program with the Consortium for Aboriginal Training in Construction in Quebec. The Honourable Denis Lebel, Minister of State (Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec) and Member of Parliament for Roberval-Lac-Saint-Jean, made the announcement today on behalf of the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development.

"We are building partnerships with the private and public sectors to provide Aborignal people with the skills and training they need to get good jobs," said Minister of State Lebel. "This investment will ensure that Aboriginal people have access to the tools they need to participate in the construction industry."

Supported by the Government of Canada, in partnership with the Government of Quebec and Aboriginal and private sector partners, the program will receive $6.7 million under the Budget 2007 investment in the Aboriginal Skills and Employment Partnership program. The provincial government and private and Aboriginal partners will contribute a total of $11.6 million to the program.

Over 500 participants will be supported through the various stages of training and will receive guidance and mentoring on possible obstacles and challenges such as intercultural relationships, personal problem solving, and integration into the workforce. The project will result in 200 long-term major economic opportunities in the oil and gas, civil engineering and infrastructure, and hydro-electric industries.

To learn more about the Economic Action Plan, visit www.actionplan.gc.ca.

This news release is available in alternative formats on request. Call 1-800-788-8282 on a touch-tone phone or through a teletypewriter (TTY).

    
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Aboriginal Skills and Employment Partnership Program

The Aboriginal Skills and Employment Partnership (ASEP) program focuses on sustainable employment for Aboriginal people in major economic industries, leading to lasting benefits for Aboriginal communities, families and individuals. ASEP aims to provide Aboriginal people with the skills they need to participate in economic opportunities across Canada in sectors such as mining, hydro development, fisheries, tourism, and infrastructure projects.

ASEP is a nationally managed, opportunity-driven, project-based program that promotes increased participation of Aboriginal people in major economic developments through formalized Aboriginal and private sector partnership. The provinces and territories must also contribute to the projects, and all partners must contribute at least 50 percent of the total cost of the project. The ASEP program supports multi-year training-to-employment strategies that are developed and managed by Aboriginal organizations and employers, leading to long-term skilled jobs for Aboriginal people in existing and emerging industries.

ASEP was initially launched in 2003 as an $85-million, five-year program supporting nine projects that resulted in over 8,700 Aboriginal people receiving training, with more than 3,000 of them finding long-term sustainable jobs. In 2007, the ASEP program was extended to 2012, with an additional $105 million supporting sixteen more projects. Through Canada's Economic Action Plan, the Government is investing an additional $100 million over three years in ASEP to help Aboriginal people participate in the workforce and get the training they need to make the most of employment opportunities.

Project Description

The Consortium for Aboriginal Training in Construction in Quebec was created to deal with current and future skills shortages. The project activities are divided into five phases and will be implemented in a structured training-to-employment plan. Each participant will be supported through the various stages of training and will receive guidance and mentoring on possible obstacles and challenges such as intercultural relationships, personal problem solving, and integration into the workforce.

    
    The key expected results are:

        - 725 Aboriginal people will be assessed for participation in the
          project.
        - 510 Aboriginal people will participate in various training.
        - 200 Aboriginal people are expected to find long-term employment in
          the construction industry.

    Project Sponsors

    Human Resources and Skills Development Canada: $6.7 million (37 percent)
    Private sector: $5.5 million (30 percent)
    Aboriginal organizations: $2.6 million (14 percent)
    Provincial government: $3.3 million (19 percent)
    

SOURCE Employment and Social Development Canada

For further information: For further information: (media only): Michelle Bakos, Press Secretary, Office of Minister Finley, (819) 994-2482; Media Relations Office, Human Resources and Skills Development Canada, (819) 994-5559; For more information on the Consortium for Aboriginal Training in Construction in Quebec: Marjolaine Étienne, President, (418) 275-2473, ext. 423; Mélanie Boivin, Administrative Coordinator, (514) 341-7740, ext. 6351


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