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Minister Kenney consults with First Nations leaders and employers on jobs, skills and the economy

Employment Minister wraps up jobs tour of northern British Columbia

PRINCE GEORGE, BC , Feb. 18, 2014 /CNW/ - The Honourable Jason Kenney, Minister of Employment and Social Development, today wrapped up consultations with First Nations leaders and employers across northern British Columbia before beginning a tour of the Territories.

Minister Kenney heard first-hand from First Nations leaders and employers about the need to fill skills shortages and ensure Aboriginal people have the training they need to take advantage of job opportunities in B.C.'s resources sector. Minister Kenney discussed natural resources developments in northern B.C. and the expected economic growth. By 2020, there will be 19 000 more jobs than people in B.C. and Minister Kenney emphasized the need to fill them with qualified Canadians. The Minister also outlined Government of Canada measures that help Canadians, including Aboriginal people, get the training they need to take advantage of these opportunities and land well-paying jobs.

He highlighted federal investments that support skills training for Aboriginal people.  While in Northern B.C., Minister Kenney announced over $6.1 million to the Pacific Trail Pipelines Aboriginal Skills and Employment Partnership Training Society to help Aboriginal people in British Columbia prepare for jobs in the resources sector.

Quick facts

  • A skills shortage is expected to hit British Columbia, resulting in 19 000 jobs without qualified workers by 2020.

  • Directly and indirectly, natural resources - including the energy sector - account for 1.8 million jobs, almost a fifth of Canada's economy and over half our exports.

  • Aboriginal youth represent the fastest growing demographic in Canada and Aboriginal people are underrepresented in today's economy.

  • Last year, more than 31 000 Aboriginal people were employed in natural resources.

Quote

"Our government's top priorities remain creating jobs, economic growth and long-term prosperity. The Economic Action Plan announced measures to help Canadians, including Aboriginal people, get the training they need for in-demand jobs. Given the proximity of many First Nations communities to large resource projects, there is a tremendous opportunity to address some of Canada's skills shortages, while improving economic opportunities for Aboriginal people."

- The Honourable Jason Kenney, Minister of Employment and Social Development and Minister for Multiculturalism

Associated Links

Aboriginal Labour Market Programs
Economic Action Plan 2014

SOURCE Employment and Social Development Canada

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