McGuinty Government Helping Build Job Opportunities For People On Social Assistance

    25 Community Projects Supported By The Employment Innovations Fund

    OTTAWA, June 22 /CNW/ - The McGuinty government is opening the door to
job opportunities for Ontarians on social assistance by funding innovative
community projects that connect local businesses with job-ready people,
Minister of Community and Social Services Madeleine Meilleur announced today.
    "As part of our plan to help more people on social assistance find jobs,
we called on the business community to get involved - and they responded,"
said Meilleur. "The number of innovative proposals we received is a testament
to the creativity and good business sense of Ontario's employers and
    The projects are funded through the $4 million Employment Innovations
Fund, which was launched in June 2006. Twenty-five projects, designed by
organizations from across Ontario - including municipalities, not-for-profit
organizations and employer associations - have been selected for funding.
    Projects being launched in Ottawa include a customer service skills
training program run by The Canadian Council on Rehabilitation and Work, and a
City of Ottawa marketing campaign aimed at engaging local employers to hire
social assistance recipients.
    "We are very excited to have the opportunity to move forward with our
project," said Norma Ricker, Director of Employment Partnerships with The
Canadian Council on Rehabilitation and Work. "Not only will it help more
people with disabilities in our community improve their lives by finding
employment, but it will also provide local businesses with another resource
for the recruitment of potential employees."
    "I am extremely proud of our community for stepping up and responding to
the call to create opportunities for people in Ottawa," said Richard Patten,
MPP for Ottawa Centre. "These projects will make a positive difference to both
individuals and our local economy."
    The fund builds on existing employment programs and is just one of many
government initiatives aimed at helping Ontarians enter the workforce,

    -   Eliminating barriers to employment for people on social assistance by
        providing straightforward incentives and extra support to help them
        find and keep jobs
    -   Launching Employment Ontario, a new integrated training and
        employment system that will ensure people in rural areas have better
        access to skills training and labour market services that are
        tailored to the needs of rural communities
    -   Encouraging strong job creation - with 339,300 net new jobs since
        October 2003.

    "We're committed to building opportunity for all Ontarians to succeed in
the workforce and we're engaging others to work with us to help more people
achieve this goal," said Meilleur. "By supporting partnerships that help local
businesses connect with job-ready people, we're investing in the future
prosperity of our province."

    Disponible en français



    As part of the 2006 provincial budget, the government established the
Employment Innovations Fund to engage Ontario's employers in creating and
expanding job opportunities for people receiving financial assistance from
Ontario Works or the Ontario Disability Support Program.
    Twenty-five projects have been selected to receive funding through the
Employment Innovations Fund:

    Location       Project Submitted By   Brief Project Description
    Province-wide  Alliance of            Helping Ontario businesses recruit,
                   Manufacturers and      accommodate and retain qualified
                   Exporters Canada       staff with disabilities to fill
                                          skills shortages in the
                                          manufacturing sector by
                                          implementing an employer challenge
                                          to hire people with disabilities,
                                          building member awareness and
                                          recognizing the achievements of
                                          employer champions
    Province-wide  Canadian Food          Assisting the Ontario grocery
                   Industry Council and   sector to increase career
                   the Ontario March of   opportunities for people with
                   Dimes                  disabilities through a targeted
                                          provincial marketing strategy to
                                          the Canadian Food Industry
                                          Council's membership
    Brantford      The Corporation of     Helping victims and potential
                   the City of Brantford  victims of domestic abuse develop
                                          skills to gain employment in the
                                          skilled trades
    Hastings       County of Hastings     Supporting an initiative that helps
                   Ontario Works and the  people get to and from work,
                   Town of Deseronto      thereby removing this key barrier
                                          to employment for people on Ontario
                                          Works and the Ontario Disability
                                          Support Program in the county
    Hawkesbury     Le Phénix              Providing participants with job-
                                          specific training and employment
                                          opportunities with a local employer
    Huron County   County of Huron        Providing hands-on training in the
                   Social Services and    customer service/hospitality sector
                   the County of          in the employers' places of
                   Stratford              business during the 'down-time' of
                                          the winter months to mirror the
                                          experience of actual employment
    Kitchener      Lutherwood             Providing customized training to
                                          enable participants to obtain
                                          employment as either truck drivers
                                          or in the banking field with
                                          employer sponsors
    Madoc          Madoc C.O.P.E.         Establishing a community-based
                   Corporation            storefront bakeshop to create job
                                          and training opportunities that
                                          will prepare participants for
                                          employment opportunities at other
                                          local food service providers
    Niagara        Regional Municipality  A collaboration among three levels
                   of Niagara             of government across 12
                                          municipalities in Niagara and
                                          employers to provide direct, daily,
                                          roundtrip transportation for social
                                          assistance recipients to Niagara
                                          workplaces in the service,
                                          hospitality, horticulture, health,
                                          construction and manufacturing
    North Bay      North Bay and          Creating a pool of employees who
                   District Chamber of    are ready for work and establishing
                   Commerce, District     a database system to streamline the
                   Social Services        recruitment and screening process
                   Administration Boards  for employers
                   in the North East
                   Region, and the
                   District Municipality
                   of Muskoka
    Ottawa         Canadian Council on    Training participants on customer
                   Rehabilitation and     service-based skills, leading to
                   Work                   employment opportunities with
                                          partner employers for successful
                                          graduates of the program
    Ottawa         City of Ottawa         Helping participants access
                                          employment opportunities and
                                          creating a marketing campaign to
                                          engage local employers in hiring
                                          social assistance recipients
    Peel Region    Regional Municipality  Expanding an existing partnership
                   of Peel                in order to place participants in
                                          full-time jobs with a large
                                          logistics/manufacturing employer
                                          and to support them after placement
                                          through a job retention strategy
    Peel Region    Training and Renewal   Providing pre-employment and on-
                   Foundation             the-job skills training to prepare
                                          candidates for careers as coffee
                                          and vending service workers.
                                          Graduates of the training will
                                          receive a diploma recognized by the
                                          Ontario Coffee and Vending Service
                                          Association and will be placed in
                                          jobs with employer partners
    Prescott-      Centre de service à    Developing a volunteer
    Russell        l'emploi de            transportation system to get
                   Prescott-Russell Inc.  participants to and from work,
                                          addressing a significant barrier to
                                          employment in the area
    Sault          John Howard Society    Providing up to six months of work
    Ste. Marie     of Sault Ste. Marie    experience in entry level jobs in
                   and District           retail, hospitality and cleaning
                                          brought about by the expansion of
                                          local call centres
    St. Thomas     St. Thomas and Elgin   Training, licensing and employing
    and Elgin      County Ontario Works   participants in truck driving and
    County                                providing support to participants
                                          for one year following training
    Sudbury        Community Living       Building the capacity of business
                   Ontario and the        leaders to take on a key role in
                   Rotary Clubs of        promoting the hiring and
                   Ontario                accommodation of people who have a
    Sudbury        Sudbury-Manitoulin     Supporting workplace attachment
                   District Social        through skill development and job
                   Services               placements with local employer
                   Administration Board   sponsors for graduates of the
    Toronto        George Brown College   Participants will be supported by a
                                          Job Coach and will receive a
                                          Construction Craft and Worker Level
                                          1 Completion Certificate, as well
                                          as a Material Handling Certificate.
                                          The Centre for Addiction and Mental
                                          Health's redevelopment project will
                                          provide opportunities for work
                                          placements and employment
    Toronto        Jewish Vocational      Building employment opportunities
                   Service of             and career pathways in the retail
                   Metropolitan Toronto   sector by providing participants
                   and the Retail         with a paid internship with one of
                   Council of Canada      12 supporting employers
    Toronto        Toronto District       Providing participants with
                   School Board           training in material handling,
                                          shipping/receiving, purchasing and
                                          inventory, as well as with
                                          employment opportunities with
                                          employer partners
    Toronto        Toronto Social         Connecting local residents with
                   Services, Toronto      training, employment, and
                   Community Housing      opportunities for career
                   Corporation and The    advancement associated with the
                   Daniels Corporation    revitalization of Regent Park
    Windsor        Community Living       Providing training and co-op
                   Windsor                placements geared towards entry-
                                          level positions in the hospitality
    Windsor        Unemployed Help        Providing a group-based
                   Centre of Windsor      intervention program designed to
                   Inc., St. Clair        support long-term employment
                   College of Applied     sustainability for women receiving
                   Arts and Technology    social assistance. Sponsoring
                   and the City of        employers will provide job
                   Windsor Ontario Works  placements to graduates of the

    Proposals are currently being accepted for the next round of funding.
Letters of Interest must be submitted using the Employment Innovations Fund
Application Package, which is available online at Priority
consideration for funding this year will be given to Letters of Interest
submitted by July 25, 2007.
    The Employment Innovations Fund is funded entirely by the Ministry of
Community and Social Services and is one of the many ways the McGuinty
government is helping people on social assistance get into the workforce and
on the path to a brighter future.

    John Letherby
    Communications and Marketing Branch

    Disponible en français


For further information:

For further information: Marc Despatie, Minister's Office, (416)
325-5219, (416) 433-8584 (cell); John Letherby, Communications and Marketing
Branch, (416) 325-5187

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