Ontario’s Action Plan: Protect, Support, Recover Connects Workers in Waterloo Region Most Affected by COVID-19 with Jobs

Published on November 09, 2020

Ontario’s 2020 Budget provides $180.5 million to connect workers impacted by COVID-19 with retraining and to help industries find skills they need


NEWS November 9, 2020

 

ELMIRA — The Ontario government is providing $180.5 million to connect workers in the tourism and hospitality sector and others most affected by the pandemic to training and jobs. Part of Ontario’s Action Plan: Protect, Support, Recover, this investment includes a skilled trades strategy, an additional $100 million of dedicated investments through Employment Ontario for skills training, a redesigned Second Career program, and $59.5 million to acquire in-demand skills.


This morning, Mike Harris, MPP for Kitchener-Conestoga was joined by Stan Cho, Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Finance, and Amy Fee, MPP for Kitchener South-Hespeler, at Tri-Mach Group in Elmira to announce this investment that will directly benefit workers in Waterloo Region looking to start an exciting career in the skilled trades.


“Filling the current and future skilled trades’ labour gap has been a focus for our government,” said MPP Harris. “This training will support workers and employers alike in Waterloo Region and will build off our previous multi-million-dollar investments in local organizations like Conestoga College, Communitech, Canadian Tooling and Machining Association, the Work-Based Learning Consortium, and Toyota.”


Between February and May 2020, employment declined by 1,156,500, or 15.3 per cent. Among those most impacted by the pandemic include workers in the tourism and hospitality sector, youth aged 15 to 24, and women. While there has been a strong recovery in jobs, employment in October remained 287,400 jobs below its pre-COVID-19 level and unemployment remained at 9.6 per cent.


“Now is the time to invest in retraining our workers, so they are ready to contribute to the recovery of our province,” said Rod Phillips, Minister of Finance. “Ontario’s Action Plan: Protect, Support, Recover will help job seekers, particularly those hardest hit by COVID-19, to get the skills they need.”


To help people upgrade their skills, the government is investing an additional $180.5 million over three years in micro-credentials, employment services and training programs, including apprenticeships. The Province is taking comprehensive action to help get people back to work and contribute to Ontario’s economic recovery, including a focus on the groups and sectors most impacted by the pandemic.


“We are committed to taking action to support Ontario’s workers, and Ontario’s economic recovery,” said Monte McNaughton, Minister of Labour, Training, and Skills Development. “Our Skilled Trades Strategy will support businesses and help prepare people for jobs by creating a flexible skilled trades and apprenticeship system that will best prepare Ontario workers for the jobs of today and tomorrow.”


QUICK FACTS:


• Ontario's Action Plan: Protect, Support, Recover includes an additional $100 million of dedicated investments through Employment Ontario for skills training, a redesigned Second Career program, and $59.5 million to acquire in-demand skills


• From June to October, employment in Ontario has risen by 868,600 jobs.


• Ontario’s real GDP is projected to decline by 6.5 per cent in 2020 and rise by 4.9 per cent in 2021. Ontario’s economic growth is expected to continue after 2021, with real GDP projected to rise 3.5 per cent in 2022 before moderating to 2.0 per cent growth in 2023.


• Ontario was the first jurisdiction in Canada to release a fiscal outlook that reflected the impacts of the COVID-19 crisis in its March 25, 2020 Ontario’s Action Plan: Responding to COVID-19.


CONTACT INFORMATION
Emily McLaughlin
Office of MPP Mike Harris
Emily.mclaughlin@pc.ola.org
226-752-8498