Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

Human Resources and Skills Development Canada
Government of British Columbia

Government of British Columbia

August 28, 2009 13:00 ET

Governments of Canada and British Columbia Help Older Workers Get New Jobs

MISSION, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Aug. 28, 2009) - The governments of Canada and British Columbia are working in partnership to help older workers remain active in the workforce by jointly investing over $30 million and extending the Targeted Initiative for Older Workers until March 2012. This support will help up to 3,000 unemployed older workers in British Columbia acquire new skills and find jobs.

The Honourable Chuck Strahl, Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development, Federal Interlocutor for Metis and Non-Status Indians and Member of Parliament for Chilliwack-Fraser Canyon, on behalf of the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development, along with the Honourable Moira Stilwell, Minister of Advanced Education and Labour Market Development for British Columbia, announced today 19 new agreements funded through this partnership. These agreements will help up to 471 unemployed older workers across the province.

"When Canadians, including older workers, lose their jobs, we want to help them get back into the workforce as soon as possible," said Minister Strahl. "Every region has different needs, and that is why we are working closely with British Columbia to ensure that older workers receive the support, training and skills development opportunities they need to find jobs and adapt to economic changes."

"The older workers program is another example of how the provincial and federal governments are working together to provide new options for unemployed older individuals, helping them to find and maintain meaningful employment," added Minister Stilwell. "With programs like this, we're helping more British Columbians and more communities with the resources they need to be successful."

The Targeted Initiative for Older Workers is a federal-provincial/territorial cost-shared initiative designed to help unemployed older workers living in communities affected by high unemployment and/or downsizing. Through the Initiative, these individuals can get the skills they need to find and keep new jobs, or start their own business.

Under Canada's Economic Action Plan, the federal government is providing an additional $60 million nationally over three years for the Targeted Initiative for Older Workers. This funding builds on previous investments in Budget 2006, which committed $70 million to implement the Initiative, and in Budget 2008, which invested an additional $90 million to extend this initiative to March 31, 2012. This additional investment will allow up to 6,000 more older workers to benefit from the specialized support they need to transition to new jobs.

The original agreement between the two governments was signed in 2007. Through this agreement, the Government of British Columbia was able to implement 22 projects. These projects have helped approximately 1,000 unemployed older workers get training, find new jobs or become self-employed.

The Targeted Initiative for Older Workers provides programming until March 31, 2012. Under this initiative, the provinces and territories that have chosen to participate are responsible for identifying vulnerable communities, and working with organizations in affected areas to design and deliver projects.

To learn more about Canada's Economic Action Plan, please visit the following Web site: www.actionplan.gc.ca.


BACKGROUNDER

About the program

The Targeted Initiative for Older Workers is a federal-provincial/territorial cost-shared initiative that provides employment assistance services and activities, such as skills upgrading and work experience, to improve the employability of unemployed older workers aged 55 to 64 living in vulnerable communities. To date, over 4,000 workers across Canada have been helped through the Initiative.

About the new projects

A total of 19 new projects across the province have been approved to run from August 2009 to March 2010. These projects represent a joint investment of $4,516,708 of the committed $30 million, and will help up to 471 unemployed older workers across the province with their return to employment.

A list of the projects is available at the following address: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/human_resources_ENG_0828.pdf

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
    or
    Ministry of Advanced Education and Labour Market Development
    Craig MacBride
    Public Affairs Officer
    250-356-7882
    250-213-1649 (cell)