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
BRANTFORD — The Ontario government is providing $180.5 million to connect workers in the tourism, hospitality sectors 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.
“These initiatives will help job seekers, particularly those hardest hit by COVID-19, get the skills they need,” said Brantford-Brant MPP Will Bouma. “This training supports workers and employers alike. It also addresses long-standing gaps in skills training which, unaddressed, would be a barrier to a strong economic recovery.”
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.”
- 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.
- Ontario’s Action Plan: Protect, Support, Recover
- Employment and training services in Ontario