Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

October 08, 2009 11:00 ET

Government of Canada Helps People With Disabilities in Regina Find Meaningful Employment

REGINA, SASKATCHEWAN--(Marketwire - Oct. 8, 2009) - People with disabilities will get help to prepare for and obtain employment thanks to the Government of Canada's support for two local employment projects. Mr. Ray Boughen, Member of Parliament for Palliser, made the announcement today on behalf of the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development.

"In today's environment, it is more important than ever that all Canadians develop the skills they need to participate and succeed in the job market," said Mr. Boughen. "By supporting these projects, our government is helping Canadians with disabilities develop the skills, knowledge and work experience they need to maximize their potential and independence."

The Learning Disabilities Association of Canada will receive $51,861 in Skills Link funding to support its Youth Transition Project, which will help eight youth who have learning disabilities and are facing employment barriers develop life and job skills to ease their transition to work or return to school.

The organization will also receive $32,000 to support its Adult Transition Project, under the Enhanced Employment Assistance Services component of the Opportunities Fund for People with Disabilities. This funding will help an additional six persons with disabilities prepare for and find meaningful employment, become self-employed, or return to school.

"One in ten Canadians has a learning disability. It doesn't mean they can't learn. It simply means they need access to proven supports that are critical to their success. This program is one of those proven supports," said Ms. Shelley Kemp, Director of the Regina Branch of the Learning Disabilities Association of Saskatchewan. "One of the other supports is the psycho-educational assessment, which is also included in this project for participants to take advantage of. This program gives all participants the tools they need to reach their dreams in all areas of their lives."

The federal government is working with the provinces and territories, community organizations and other stakeholders to provide Canadians with the training, skills and opportunities they need to participate in the workforce and contribute to their communities.

Skills Link focuses on helping youth facing barriers to employment, such as single parents, Aboriginal youth, young persons with disabilities, recent immigrants, youth living in rural and remote areas, and youth who have dropped out of high school.

The Opportunities Fund supports an array of activities, such as increasing employability skills, providing work experience and preparing individuals for self-employment. The Government of Canada is committed to breaking down barriers that prevent Canadians from reaching their full potential with a wide range of effective policies, programs and services tailored to people with disabilities.

The Skills Link and Opportunities Fund programs are part of the Government of Canada's strategy to create the best educated, most skilled and most flexible workforce in the world. The Government underscored its commitment to this strategy in Canada's Economic Action Plan. A key component of the Plan is to create more and better opportunities for Canadian workers through skills development. To learn more about Canada's Economic Action Plan, visit www.actionplan.gc.ca.

These programs are delivered by Service Canada, which provides one-stop personalized services for Government of Canada programs, services and benefits. 

For more information about these programs, call 1 800 O-Canada, visit www.servicecanada.gc.ca or drop by your local Service Canada Centre.

BACKGROUNDER

Founded in 1963, the Learning Disabilities Association of Canada is a national non-profit voluntary organization that provides employment opportunities for people with learning disabilities. Between September 28, 2009, and March 26, 2010, the organization will help eight youth who have learning disabilities and are facing employment barriers become employed or return to school. The Youth Transition Project will deliver the case management services, group-based employability skills and work experience components of the Skills Link program. During the same period, the organization will provide enhanced employability assistance services, through its Adult Transition Project, to help six individuals with learning disabilities meet the goals set in their employment action plans and prepare for and obtain employment, or return to school. Participants will take part in skills enhancement activities that will help them succeed in future work placements, enabling them to enter the labour force.

As part of the Government of Canada's Youth Employment Strategy, the Skills Link program is one of three programs that help young Canadians, particularly those facing barriers to employment, obtain career information, develop skills, gain work experience, find good jobs and stay employed. The other two programs are Summer Work Experience and Career Focus.

Skills Link focuses on helping youth facing barriers to employment, such as single parents, Aboriginal youth, young persons with disabilities, recent immigrants, youth living in rural and remote areas, and youth who have dropped out of high school. It offers a client-centred approach based on assessing an individual's specific needs. The program supports youth in developing basic and advanced employment skills. Eligible participants between 15 and 30 years of age -who are not receiving Employment Insurance benefits- are assisted through a coordinated approach, offering longer-term supports and services that can help them find and keep a job.

The Enhanced Employment Assistance Services component of the Opportunities Fund is designed to help Canadians with disabilities who have little or no work experience, and who are not eligible for Employment Insurance benefits. This subsidy encourages employers to hire workers they may not otherwise have hired. The Fund works with community organizations and the private sector to support projects that help Canadians with disabilities develop the skills and work experience they need to participate in the job market. The Opportunities Fund is an important employment element of the Disability Agenda for the Government of Canada.

This news release is available in alternative formats upon request.

Contact Information

  • Office of Minister Finley
    Michelle Bakos
    Press Secretary
    819-994-2482
    or
    Human Resources and Skills Development Canada
    Media Relations Office
    819-994-5559