Governments of Canada and Manitoba Support Workers Affected by Economic Downturn

May 22, 2009 | Government News

May 22, 2009-To help workers hit hardest by the global recession, the Government of Canada is investing more than $34 million in Manitoba’s employment and training programs under an agreement signed today between the federal and provincial governments. The new federal investment will create more job opportunities, through skills development, that will help an estimated 3,400 Manitobans get back to work.

The Honourable Vic Toews, President of the Treasury Board and Member of Parliament for Provencher, on behalf of the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development, and the Honourable Andrew Swan, Minister of Competitiveness, Training and Trade for Manitoba, signed the agreement today.

“Our government is taking quick action to counter the effects of the economic downturn,” said Minister Toews. “Through Canada’s Economic Action Plan, we are supporting Canadians by providing new opportunities for short- and long-term skills upgrading that will help prepare them for the jobs of the future.”

“We know that we must keep investing in our greatest resource, the people of Manitoba. Their ingenuity and strength, coupled with education and training, will keep our province moving forward and our economy growing in new and inventive ways,” said Minister Swan.

This new funding is in addition to the almost $128 million provided to the Province of Manitoba over the next two years for employment and training programs under existing agreements.

The Government of Manitoba will use today’s new funding to support training in a wide range of areas, including literacy and essential skills, apprenticeship and trades, health care, entrepreneurship, and “green” jobs. The Province will put a particular focus on helping people who face employment barriers prepare for and succeed in the labour market.

Under the new agreement, the Government of Canada is investing $23 million to help the Province provide employment and training programs to its industries and Employment Insurance eligible-residents.

The balance, $11 million over two years, will support provincial initiatives that help workers, whether or not they are eligible for Employment Insurance. With a focus on low skilled workers, programs will help people retain their jobs or make the transition to new ones.

Nationally, the federal government has announced $1.5 billion in new investments over the next two years to respond to the economic downturn and provide training and skills development for more than 150,000 workers.

Similar announcements were made today in Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick, Ontario, Saskatchewan and Alberta. Agreements with Nova Scotia, Quebec and British Columbia are already in place.

As a result, the Government of Canada now has in place amended Labour Market and Labour Market Development Agreements with nine provinces. Agreements with Newfoundland and Labrador as well as the three territories are expected to be concluded shortly.

Canada’s Economic Action Plan is the Government of Canada’s strategy to protect Canadians from the impacts of the global economic downturn and help provide for the country’s long-term growth. Through major targeted initiatives, the Government is investing an unprecedented $8.3 billion to support workers and their families, including measures for income support, skills and training.

To learn more about Canada’s Economic Action Plan, visit

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