NORTH BATTLEFORD, Saskatchewan – The Government of Canada is providing more support to Indigenous employment and training organizations serving Indigenous people across Canada. The goal is to increase opportunities for Indigenous people to develop their skills and access support services they need to get jobs and succeed in the labour market.
The Honourable MaryAnn Mihychuk, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour, made the announcement today at the Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations (FSIN) Assembly.
Some measures supported by this targeted funding to at-risk Indigenous communities could include: flexible supports for costs associated with obtaining child care; transportation needs and services; and driver education and licensing.
Budget 2016 also includes support for Indigenous community needs, such as housing construction, water treatment and local administration. Indigenous people will also benefit from funding for literacy, learning, individual supports and essential skills training.
Minister Mihychuk also informed the audience of a new call for proposals for the Skills and Partnership Fund, with a total value of $50 million. The Fund encourages Indigenous organizations to create partnerships with governments, businesses and community organizations to improve skills training. The call for proposals closes on July 5, 2016.
The Government remains focused on renewing its nation-to-nation relationship with Indigenous people, based on recognition, rights and respect. To further this co-operation, the Government will engage in discussions with Indigenous partners to work towards a renewed, improved and lasting Aboriginal Skills and Employment Training Strategy (ASETS). The first engagement has taken place with FSIN and further engagement with Indigenous partners will take place this year. A renewed ASETS will help provide stability to the program in 2017 and beyond.
“Today’s investments will help more Indigenous people overcome barriers to finding and keeping jobs. We’re providing more support today, and launching a nation-to-nation discussion that will help build a sustainable job opportunities program for the years ahead” said The Honourable MaryAnn Mihychuk, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour.
“We welcome the federal government investment into the development of our people’s skills and training needs. Our First Nation people require education and training opportunities to build healthier families and communities. This is a positive step forward to the importance of life-long learning. We look forward to our continued nation-to-nation Inherent and Treaty based
To date, ASETS has helped over 100,000 Indigenous people find jobs and over 49,000 return to school. It supports 84 Indigenous organizations with over 600 points of service throughout Canada to develop and deliver labour market programs and services to increase Indigenous participation in the job market.