News Release Article from  Employment and Social Development Canada

Government of Canada creates partnerships to improve opportunities for Aboriginal people in Yukon

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Whitehorse, Yukon, July 8, 2008-A project that provides Aboriginal people with the skills development, support and training that they need to find jobs in Yukon was announced today.

The Honourable Rona Ambrose, President of the Queen's Privy Council for Canada, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs and Minister of Western Economic Diversification, on behalf of the Honourable Monte Solberg, Minister of Human Resources and Social Development, made the announcement along with the Honourable Dennis Fentie, Premier of Yukon, and Mr. Bill Dunn, Chair of the Yukon Mine Training Association (YMTA).

The Government of Canada is contributing approximately $9.3 million through the Aboriginal Skills and Employment Partnership (ASEP) program for the "Partnership, People, Production: Get Into It" project operated by the YMTA.

"The Government of Canada is committed to creating the best educated, most skilled and most flexible work force in the world," said Minister Ambrose. "The "Get Into It" project will offer Aboriginal people the skills they need to find and keep good quality jobs, help industry facing labour shortages and strengthen the local economy."

Total funding for the "Partnership, People, Production: Get Into It" project could reach over $19 million over five years leading to lasting benefits for Aboriginal communities, families and individuals.

The project offers training and skills development opportunities for Aboriginal people in mining and other resource-based sectors, aiming to provide employment for approximately 500 Aboriginal people leading to at least 296 long-term employment opportunities in Yukon.

"The Yukon government is committed to building a skilled and adaptable work force that meets the needs of Yukon's growing economy," Premier Fentie said. "The Yukon government continues to support the Yukon Mine Training Association as it works to train local residents with the skills they need to access jobs in their region. We're pleased with the investment being made by the Government of Canada as it will complement the work completed by the Yukon government and the Yukon Mine Training Association to date."

"This is a very exciting development for YMTA, industry and First Nations," said Mr. Bill Dunn, Chair of the YMTA Board. "The resource industries are on the rise in Yukon, and they require a lot of skilled labour. We want to ensure that Yukon's First Nations people will be ready to actively participate. The YMTA is pleased to contribute almost $8 million for this project through the contributions of the partnering First Nations and companies."

The Aboriginal Skills and Employment Partnership program focuses on sustainable Aboriginal employment by providing the skills training needed to participate in economic opportunities such as northern mining, oil and gas, and fishery projects across Canada.

In 2007, the Government of Canada invested an additional $105 million to the ASEP program. When combined with the original $85 million investment, it will result in training for more than 16,000 Aboriginal people and 10,000 new jobs in and around their communities. This year, the Government of Canada committed $70 million for measures to foster Aboriginal economic development.

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This news release is available in alternative formats upon request.

For further information (media only):

Lesley Harmer
Director of Communications
Office of Minister Solberg
819-994-2482

Media Relations Office
Human Resources and Social Development Canada
819-994-5559


Backgrounder

Partnership, People, Production: Get Into It Yukon Mine Training Association

The Yukon Mine Training Association (YMTA) has partnered with Human Resources and Social Development Canada, Indian and Northern Affairs Canada, the Government of Yukon, industry and Aboriginal communities and organizations to develop and implement the "Partnership, People, Production: Get Into It" project. Through this project, Aboriginal people will gain the skills they need to succeed in the mining industry and resource-based sectors in Yukon.

Partnership, People, Production: Get Into It Project

The Yukon Mine Training Association is implementing a five-pillared approach to the administration and delivery of the "Partnership, People, Production: Get Into It" project.

The first pillar, Planning and Implementation, will involve research and needs assessments for both training and jobs for First Nations people. The YMTA will also ensure that there are enough trainers and qualified testers available for the Prior Learning Assessment Project. A database will be developed to track this information.

The second pillar, Employment and Job-Specific Training, consists of community-based and site-specific training. The YMTA will be initiating the Ready to Work Project, promoting pre-apprenticeship opportunities and creating more trades training openings.

During the third pillar phase, On-the-Job-Training, participants will receive on-site training. Assistance to industry partners will be provided through a scaled-wage subsidy program.

The fourth pillar, Community Support and Capacity Development, will ensure communities are supported for training and employment. Support will come in the form of career counselling, mentoring and awareness of how the skills needed for the resource industries will benefit people and communities for a lifetime.

The fifth pillar, Administration, encompasses activities aimed at managing the training process and programs, and recording a range of information to assess outcomes and assist in program enhancements.

The Yukon Mine Training Association

The Yukon Mine Training Association (YMTA) works to increase employment and opportunities in the mining sector, assists with attraction and retention in the work force, and facilitates the delivery of targeted skills and training programs. The YMTA also ensures that safety training is developed and delivered to meet national standards.

The YMTA was first envisaged in October 2005 by a small industry steering committee. In early 2006, there was a foundational meeting in which Yukon First Nations Chiefs and Yukon mining chief executive officers came together to agree on a vision of First Nations-Industry partnership in developing a northern work force.

In 2006, the organization took shape, a board of directors was developed, the organization was registered and formal development of its vision, purpose and policies was initiated. Seed funding was provided through the Government of Yukon and the Yukon Chamber of Mines.

In 2007, the organization started delivering small-scale training programs. The Board was strengthened and a project manager was hired to develop the organization to its full potential. YMTA secured additional funding sources through Worker's Compensation Board, Northern Strategies, and the Targeted Investment Program.

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