SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Carmen Gonzalez, Sean Houghton, Glenn Rossman, Ignacio M. Llorente, Xenia von Wedel

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Governments of Canada and Alberta sign agreement in principle on Canada Job Grant

Helping residents of Alberta get training for guaranteed jobs

EDMONTON, March 21, 2014 /CNW/ - The Honourable Jason Kenney, Minister of Employment and Social Development, and the Honourable Thomas Lukaszuk, Minister of Jobs, Skills, Training and Labour, today signed an agreement in principle on the Canada Job Grant.

Announced in Economic Action Plan 2013, the Canada Job Grant is an innovative way of delivering training that will lead to a guaranteed job. It involves employers in training decisions so that Canadians will be equipped with the skills and training they need to fill available jobs. It is designed to be flexible enough to meet the needs of businesses of all sizes, in all industries and regions.

The Canada Job Grant is part of the Government of Canada's commitment to address the paradox of too many Canadians without jobs in an economy of too many jobs without Canadians.

Quick Facts

  • The job vacancy rate in Alberta jumped from 2.9 percent in 2009 to 6.1 percent in 2013, largely due to a particularly high labour demand for skilled trades and science-based occupations.
  • In November 2013, there were approximately 220 000 job vacancies in Canada, with about 25 percent of these vacancies in Alberta alone.
  • In the next 10 years, Canada is expected to need 319 000 new workers in the construction sector, with another 145 000 new workers in the mining sector and 130 000 new workers in the petroleum sector needed by 2020.

Quotes

"Our government's top priorities are creating jobs, economic growth and long-term prosperity. The Canada Job Grant will ensure that employers put more skin in the game and that skills training leads to a guaranteed job. This is good news for Albertans, who will have better access to training that leads to real, guaranteed jobs and who will get a better bang for their buck on funding for skills training. It is also good news for the Alberta economy, because the Canada Job Grant will increase employer investment in skills training and help employers train Canadians for jobs that need to be filled so their businesses can grow and succeed."
- The Honourable Jason Kenney, Minister of Employment and Social Development

"Alberta faces some of the lowest unemployment rates in Canada, which means many of our employers face the unique challenge of not having enough workers with the right skills to fill available jobs. I'm pleased we've reached agreement on the major points of what this program could become. Now our governments will continue to work together on finalizing the agreement, so unemployed Albertans can become part of the skilled workforce that meets our current and future labour needs."
- The Honourable Thomas Lukaszuk, Alberta Minister of Jobs, Skills, Training and Labour

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Backgrounder

Associated Link

Canada Job Grant

Backgrounder

The agreement in principle signed today includes the renewal of the Labour Market Agreement—now renamed the Canada Job Fund—and the creation of the Canada Job Grant.

Canada Job Fund

The current Labour Market Agreements, created in 2007, are being transformed into the new Canada Job Fund to ensure greater employer involvement in training. Nationally, the Government of Canada will continue to provide $500 million annually to the provinces and territories for investments in skills training through the Canada Job Fund. Alberta will continue to receive approximately $57 million—Alberta's per capita share of the $500 million.

The Canada Job Fund will now include $200 million of employer-driven training, which may include funding for the Canada Job Grant or other existing employer-driven training programs. In Alberta, this means approximately $23 million of its Canada Job Fund allocation will be spent on this employer-driven training.

Canada Job Grant

The Canada Job Grant will help Canadians get the training they need for available jobs and put skills training decisions in the hands of employers. It will provide up to $15,000 per person for training costs, including tuition and training materials, which includes up to $10,000 in federal contributions. Employers would be required to contribute on average one-third of the total costs of training.

The provinces and territories will have full flexibility on the source of funds for the Canada Job Grant. They may be sourced from provincial/territorial allocations under the Canada Job Fund, the Labour Market Development Agreements or provincial/territorial sources.

The Grant will be for short-duration training provided by an eligible third-party trainer, such as community colleges, career colleges, trade union centres and private trainers. Training can be provided in a classroom, on site at a workplace or online.

All private and not-for-profit businesses with a plan to train Canadians for a new or better job will be eligible to apply for a Canada Job Grant, once implemented.

The Canada Job Grant will be flexible enough to meet the needs of businesses of all sizes, in all industries and regions. Small businesses will benefit from flexible arrangements, such as the potential to count wages as part of the employer contribution. This will help ensure that all businesses, regardless of size, can fully participate in the Canada Job Grant.

The Canada Job Grant will ensure that employers participate meaningfully as partners in the skills training system, sharing in the associated costs. This will ensure that training is better aligned with job opportunities, particularly in sectors facing skills mismatches and labour shortages.

The Canada Job Grant is strongly supported by employers and other stakeholders including:

  • The Building and Construction Trades Department, AFL-CIO;
  • National Association of Career Colleges;
  • Canadian Federation of Independent Business;
  • Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters;
  • Canadian Construction Association;
  • Information Technology Association of Canada;
  • Canadian Welding Bureau;
  • Engineers Canada;
  • Progressive Contractors Association;
  • Christian Labour Association of Canada;
  • Canadian Home Builders' Association;
  • Canadian Shipowners Association;
  • Canadian Electricity Association;
  • Canadian Institute of Plumbing and Heating;
  • Merit Canada;
  • Polytechnics Canada;
  • Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada;
  • Chemistry Association of Canada; and
  • Aerospace Industry Association of Canada.

SOURCE Employment and Social Development Canada

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