New training funds to help those in need, says McNaughton

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The Ontario government is injecting an additional $90 million into its Skills Development Fund to address a critical labor shortage, Labor Minister Monte McNaughton said.

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The money will be used to ‘upskill’ workers who are unemployed or underemployed and have the most difficulty finding a job – people with criminal records or disabilities, people on welfare society and members of at-risk groups, he said.

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“When you think across Canada today, there are 4 million Canadians who have criminal histories and criminal records,” McNaughton said Monday at a news conference in Hamilton. « Fourteen years (after) serving time or paying the consequences, 41% of these people are on welfare, so it’s good to make sure we’re uplifting people and finding purpose-driven careers, but it is also good news for taxpayers.”

McNaughton featured a mother-of-three with a criminal record who was able to get a “high-paying” union job with benefits after applying for help through the John Howard Society, which received nearly $500,000 through the fund.

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“I had never had a job in manufacturing and trades,” said Colleen Scanlan. “And it’s a 100% male-dominated workplace that I’m in, and I’m out there and hanging around like the rest of these guys. This is my kind of personal achievement.

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The labor shortage with nearly 400,000 unfilled jobs is the province’s biggest economic challenge right now, McNaughton said.

Unions, businesses and organizations offering innovative training solutions, prioritizing those most in need of a helping hand, can start applying for the program from Thursday until the end of the month. year, McNaughton said.


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