Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

April 07, 2009 13:10 ET

Government of Canada Helps People With Disabilities Prepare for Jobs in Alberta

GRIMSHAW, ALBERTA--(Marketwire - April 7, 2009) - Rural Albertans with disabilities will get help to prepare for jobs or become self-employed thanks to the Government of Canada's support for two local employment programs. Mr. Brian Jean, Member of Parliament for Fort McMurray-Athabasca, and Mr. Chris Warkentin, Member of Parliament for Peace River, 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 have the skills they need to participate and succeed in the job market," said Mr. Jean. "By supporting these projects, our government is helping Canadians with disabilities maximize their potential and independence."

"People with disabilities are an indispensable resource in our communities," said Mr. Warkentin. "Not only does investing in these projects help participants get job-ready today, it will ultimately create a stronger work force and economy tomorrow."

Accredited Supportive Living Services Limited (ASLS) will receive more than $300,000 under the Enhanced Employment Assistance Services component of the Opportunities Fund for the organization's Work in Progress III and Vocational Exploration programs. These programs will help 54 persons with disabilities in the communities of High Level, High Prairie and Slave Lake prepare for, obtain and maintain employment, or return to school.

"ASLS and the program participants are very appreciative of this opportunity to promote and enhance the inclusion of persons with disabilities in the community and the work force," said Mr. Harvey Johnson, Chair of ASLS. "The board and management of ASLS appreciate the support we are receiving financially from the federal government, as well as the confidence they have in our organization to provide quality services."

The federal government is working in partnership with stakeholders to make sure that Canadians get the training, skills and opportunities they need to participate in the work force and contribute to the quality of life in their communities.

The Opportunities Fund helps support 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 Opportunities Fund is part of the Government of Canada's strategy to create the best-educated, most-skilled and most flexible work force in the world. The Government underscored this commitment in January when it introduced Canada's Economic Action Plan. A key component of the Plan is to create more and better opportunities for Canadian workers through skills development.

This news release is available in alternative formats upon request.


Established in 1969, Accredited Supportive Living Services Limited provides services to individuals with diverse needs by encouraging opportunities for growth, development and community support.

Between February 2, 2009, and May 8, 2009, the organization's Vocational Exploration program will provide client assessment and case management services to 24 participants with disabilities. The Work in Progress III program will help 30 persons with disabilities prepare for employment or return to school through individual action plan development, skills workshops, coaching and work experience.

The $30-million 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. The Fund works in partnership with community organizations and the private sector to support projects that help Canadians with disabilities develop the broad range of skills and work experience they need to participate in the job market.

Contact Information

  • Office of Minister Finley
    Michelle Bakos
    Press Secretary
    Human Resources and Skills Development Canada
    Media Relations Office