Minister of Employment and Social Development Jason Kenney announced today that the government of Canada has provided a total of 500,000 apprenticeship grants to Canadians since 2007, to help them pursue careers in the skilled trades.
Minister Kenney spoke with apprentices at an event hosted by George Brown College to celebrate this important milestone and handed out apprenticeship grants to those who have recently completed their training.
“Our government’s top priorities are creating jobs, economic growth, and long-term prosperity. As of today, we have given out 500,000 Apprenticeship Grants. This important milestone demonstrates our government’s commitment to supporting apprentices and addressing skills shortages in trades that are so vital to our economy. Jobs in the skilled trades are in-demand, well-paying and rewarding. Choosing a career in the skilled trades is a choice for opportunity,” Kenney said.
The Apprenticeship Incentive Grant and Apprenticeship Completion Grant are cash grants that encourage Canadians to pursue and complete apprenticeship training in Red Seal trades. Through these grants, apprentices receive up to $4,000, which can be used to pay for tuition, tools or other expenses. To date, the government has provided nearly $700 million in apprenticeship grants.
He also highlighted other government of Canada measures to create opportunities for apprentices such as the introduction of the Canada Apprentice Loan, support for training programs and tax credits such as the Tool Tax Deduction for apprentices and tradesmen and the Apprenticeship Job Creation Tax Credit for employers.
Minister Kenney also addressed the need for a parity of esteem that will put the skilled trades on an equal footing with a university education. He expressed concern about negative stereotypes that exist towards the skilled trades and the false perception that a university education is more valuable than an apprenticeship.