NACC Reacts to Budget Training Program

New Training Benefit in Budget 2019

A Positive Initiative Welcomed By Canada’s
Association of National Career Colleges

OTTAWA – Dr. Michael McAllister, chairman of the National Association of Career Colleges, welcomes the federal government plan to further assist Canadians in meeting their skill sets for tomorrow’s jobs and careers.

Tuesday’s federal Liberal budget proposed more than $1.7 billion in planned new spending over five years, to help workers prepare for shifts in Canada’s labour market.

The Liberal proposal would provide a $250 refundable tax credit, accumulating over time, to allow workers to offset the costs of learning new job skills. The plan, to cost $710 million over the next five years, would be available to Canadian workers earning between $10,000 and about $150,000 a year.

The budget document says the credit is expected to launch in late 2020 and will apply against the cost of programs at eligible universities, colleges and institutions.

We are certain that Canada’s private career colleges can assist workers in a major way in planning and delivering on the training necessary for their next career,” said Dr. McAllister.

The government also plans to create a new employment insurance benefit for those who take time off from work to attend a training program, up to a maximum of 55 per cent of earnings. That program carries a price tag of $1.04 billion over five years.

Only those who qualify for employment insurance would be eligible for the four weeks of leave, redeemable within a four-year period. It would also require the federal government to negotiate labour code changes with provinces whose jurisdictions cover approximately 90 per cent of Canadian workers.

There is always a challenge for government to be aware of the jobs that need to be filled, and the skills needed by workers looking for employment. This new program should help in that aspect and it is important to note that the adaptability of private career colleges can help close that gap,” said Dr. McAllister.

Canada has a very low unemployment rate, but there are substantial job vacancies in some fields and that highlights the need to align the current skills offered with current skills needed,” added Dr. McAllister.

Past Liberal budgets have put billions into job-training programs that are largely the domain of provincial governments, hoping to cut poverty rates and get more people into the labour force. The new spending unveiled Tuesday is part of a group of measures that include lower interest rates for student loans, a revamped youth employment strategy and new parental leave options for student researchers and postdoctoral fellows who receive money from a granting council.

The National Association of Career Colleges is prepared to work with the government in addressing the skills training needs of all Canadians as we move through an economy where lifelong careers are disappearing and Canadians recognize the benefits of continuous education to meet the needed skill sets for tomorrow’s economy,” said Dr. McAllister in closing.

For information please contact:

Denis Sabourin
CEO of the National Association of Career Colleges