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Jobs And Opportunities for Canadians

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Supporting Job Creation

To improve Canada’s long-term economic growth, we need to get more of Canada’s underutilized workers and their skills to work. Canada’s well-trained and highly educated workers are one of our key advantages in competing and succeeding in the global economy.

Economic Action Plan 2012 builds on existing initiatives with new measures to connect more Canadians with the job market.

Employment and Skills Training

Economic Action Plan 2012 promotes job creation by small businesses and facilitates the participation of under-represented groups in the workforce through additional investments in skills training and incentives for employment.

Extending the Hiring Credit for Small Business

Economic Action Plan 2012 extends the temporary Hiring Credit for Small Business to make it more attractive to hire new workers. A credit of up to $1,000 against a small employer’s increase in its 2012 Employment Insurance premiums over those paid in 2011 will be provided. This temporary credit will benefit about 536,000 employers, reducing small business 2012 payroll costs by about $205 million. For more information, visit

Enhancing the Youth Employment Strategy

Young workers entering the workforce face an uncertain job market, while some sectors face labour shortages that young Canadians have the skills to fill. In 2011, the Youth Employment Strategy helped connect 70,000 Canadian youth with the work experience and skills training needed to succeed in the job market. Economic Action Plan 2012 invests an additional $50 million over two years to help more young people gain tangible skills and experience and to connect young Canadians with jobs in fields that are in high demand. For more information and how to apply, visit and follow the link to the Youth Employment Strategy.

Integrating high-quality researchers into the labour market

Economic Action Plan 2012 doubles the resources of the Industrial Research and Development Internship program with $14 million over two years. The program allows graduate students to undertake hands-on research in innovative Canadian firms, while providing firms with access to cutting-edge research and skills. For more information and how to apply, visit and  

Helping older workers

Economic Action Plan 2012 provides $6 million over three years to expand the ThirdQuarter project to key centres across the country. This innovative project, led by the Manitoba Chamber of Commerce, provides an online forum that matches employers with experienced workers over 50. For more information and how to apply, visit  

Improving labour market opportunities for Canadians with disabilities

The Government supports the participation of persons with disabilities in the economy through Labour Market Agreements for Persons with Disabilities ($218 million annually) and Labour Market Agreements ($500 million annually). It also invests $30 million annually through the Opportunities Fund for Persons with Disabilities to connect individuals with the skills and work experience needed to participate fully in the economy. Economic Action Plan 2012 provides an additional $30 million over three years to the Opportunities Fund. For more information and how to apply, visit

Encouraging Apprentices

Apprentices in designated Red Seal trades can receive up to $4,000 in grants to pay tuition, travel, tools and other expenses. For more information and how to apply for the Apprenticeship Incentive Grant and the Apprenticeship Completion Grant, visit

Improving the Employment Insurance Program

Employment Insurance (EI) is Canada’s largest labour market program, providing income replacement to help individuals and their families, as well as training and support to help Canadians return to work.

Economic Action Plan 2012 makes targeted, common-sense changes to make EI more efficient to promote job creation, remove disincentives to work, support unemployed Canadians, and quickly connect people to jobs to improve their quality of life and Canada’s economy.

Connecting Canadians with available jobs

Economic Action Plan 2012 invests $21 million over two years to connect unemployed Canadians with jobs. This includes enhancing the information provided to EI claimants to help their job search; clarifying what is required of EI claimants while they look for work; and creating a link between the EI program and the Temporary Foreign Worker Program to make qualified Canadians aware of vacancies and available to fill them, while ensuring that temporary foreign workers are employed where they are most needed. For more information, visit and follow the link to Employment.

Removing disincentives to work

Economic Action Plan 2012 invests $74 million to introduce a new, national EI pilot project that will ensure that EI claimants always benefit from accepting work by allowing them to keep more of what they earn while on EI. For more information, visit and follow the link to Employment.

How the New Working While on Claim Pilot Project Benefits Claimants

Jennifer is a dental hygienist who has been laid off and is receiving EI benefits of $450 per week. She has found part-time work in a dental clinic that pays a total of $600 per week.

Under the current Working While on Claim pilot project, Jennifer can earn up to 40 per cent of her weekly benefits, $180, with no reduction in her EI benefit payment. Earnings above this level reduce her benefit payment dollar for dollar. Jennifer’s combined earnings and EI benefit would be $630.

Under the new pilot project, Jennifer’s EI benefit will only be reduced by 50 per cent of her earnings from working while she is on claim. Her combined weekly income would be $750, an increase of $120 per week.

Economic Action Plan 2012 will also invest $387 million to improve the way EI benefits are calculated to reduce disincentives to taking all available work. It will also reduce regional disparities by ensuring that those living in regions with similar labour market conditions receive similar benefits.

Economic Action Plan 2012 will improve Canada’s labour market through innovative measures like:

  • Employment programs and skills training for young Canadians, older workers, Canadians with disabilities and First Nations.
  • Building a fast and flexible economic immigration system that responds to labour market demands.
  • Improving the Employment Insurance program.
  • Better integrating high-quality researchers into the labour market.

Economic Action Plan 2012
Jobs, Growth and Long-Term Prosperity

Find out what’s in it for you
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