Nunatsiaq Online
NEWS: Nunavut September 22, 2014 - 2:30 pm

Ottawa and Nunavut sign job training grant agreement

Nunavut to get $1 million to help employees get training, jobs

NUNATSIAQ NEWS
Jeannie Ugyuk, Nunavut's minister of family services, says the new job training partnership with Ottawa will help Nunavummiut participate fully in the growing northern labour force. (FILE PHOTO)
Jeannie Ugyuk, Nunavut's minister of family services, says the new job training partnership with Ottawa will help Nunavummiut participate fully in the growing northern labour force. (FILE PHOTO)

Nunavummiut who want to find work but need to upgrade their skills will get some financial help from Ottawa soon, so long as they can find an employer who’s also willing to contribute.

The federal government announced Sept. 22 that Nunavut will get $1 million through the Canada Job Fund.

That amounts to Nunavut’s per capita share of the $500 million national fund.

Because of its tiny population, Nunavut will also get a supplemental $500,000 “to recognize the distinct labour market needs of the territory,” a Sept. 22 news release said.

The Canada-Nunavut Job Grant, as it will be known, will provide up to $15,000 per person for training costs such as tuition and training materials. That includes up to $10,000 in federal contributions, with the employer contributing one-third of the total training costs.

According to the news release, the grant would pay for “short-duration training provided by an eligible third-party trainer,” which includes colleges, trade union centres and private trainers. Training can occur in the classroom, on the job or online.

Businesses who wish to hire people under this plan can apply for the grant. The news release says small businesses will have the option of counting wages as part of their employer contribution.

The news release included quotes from Jason Kenney, the minister of Employment and Social Development, and Nunavut MP Leona Aglukkaq, the minister responsible for the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency.

“Our government has been clear that Nunavummiut must benefit from the economic boom in the region,” Aglukkaq said in the news release. “The Canada Job Grant will give the people of Nunavut the skills employers are looking for in today’s economy.”

Nunavut’s minister of Family Services, Jeannie Ugyuk, said the grant will help Nunavummiut participate in the growing economy.

“The well-being of families and individuals is in large measure linked to access to good jobs,” Ugyuk said in the release.

“With these agreements, we ensure that additional financial resources are available to connect Nunavummiut with the education and training they need to complete for jobs that are available now and in the future.”

The news release also highlighted another financial agreement signed between the two levels of government: the Canada-Nunavut Labour Market Agreement for Persons with Disabilities.

That agreement, the first of its kind for Nunavut and worth $1.25 million per year, is geared toward programs and services, designed by the territory, which help to connect people with disabilities with available jobs.

Those services can include employment counselling, career planning, skills training, wage subsidies and technical aids and other supports.

The Canada-Nunavut Job Grant will be delivered through the Canada Job Fund, which replaces the old labour market agreements Ottawa used to sign with the provinces and territories. That program expired earlier this year.

Initially the provinces and territories unanimously rejected the new job fund because they said it was created without their input and actually cut some of the previous transfers, but they eventually agreed to the plan after several months of negotiations.

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