Ontario is launching the Youth Job Connection program to provide intensive support and training to young people with multiple barriers to employment.
The province will invest more than $160 million over two years to help over 27,000 young people get the skills and training they need to build a better future.
Starting in October, the first part of the program will provide paid pre-employment training, job opportunities and mentorship to youth aged 15 to 29 who are currently not working, not in school, or not enrolled in a training program. This part of the program will focus on youth who face complex and multiple barriers to employment including poverty, homelessness, disability and mental health.
“When youth have access to the right supports and opportunities, they can make positive choices and reach their full potential. Now, even more of Ontario’s youth facing barriers to employment will be offered the services and supports they need to transition into meaningful employment and to succeed in the labour market.” said, Tracy MacCharles, Minister of Children and Youth Services
The second part of the program will provide summer, part-time and after-school job opportunities to high school students between ages 15 and 18 who are facing challenging life circumstances and who may need support transitioning between school and work. After-school opportunities will be available this October, with summer opportunities available in spring 2016.
“We know that employment is the way out of poverty and the path to a secure future, especially for young people. This program will help provide new opportunities for them to discover what they’re good at and show employers what they can do. Giving young people the supports they need to realize their full potential is an important part of our Poverty Reduction Strategy”, said Deb Matthews, Deputy Premier, President of Treasury Board, and Minster Responsible for the Poverty Reduction Strategy
Helping youth who experience complex barriers to employment find and keep jobs is part of the government’s plan to build Ontario up by making the largest investment in public infrastructure in the province’s history, investing in people’s talents and skills, creating a dynamic, supportive environment where business thrives, and building a secure retirement savings plan.