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Future Skills Centre statement in response to federal budget 2021

April 19, 2021

The Future Skills Centre welcomes the federal government’s announcement of much-needed further investment in skills development and training – a key pillar for a sustained, inclusive economic recovery. 

The budget outlines important investments that build momentum on existing efforts toward recovery and innovation: industry-led skilling approaches in sectors facing significant disruption, a strong focus on ensuring equitable access to skills and entrepreneurship, and an emphasis on rapid response that disseminates the bulk of a $2.47 billion investment. 

Programs and supports outlined by the government align with our investment in innovation and learning and we see a strong opportunity to boost, grow and accelerate momentum in emerging innovations and strategies that are working. 

For instance, the budget proposes to provide $960 million over three years beginning in 2021-22, to Employment and Social Development Canada for a new Sectoral Workforce Solutions Program to help train workers in shifting industries. We are already supporting sectors like health through partnerships like accelerating the adoption of AI in healthcare, tourism through a rapid response project, and technology where new digital platforms ramp up the recruitment of apprentices. There are opportunities to expand and scale these models starting now.

The government also proposes to help community recovery through training and workforce planning, and EDGE UP is an example of current work supporting those in transitioning sectors like energy as just one of many partnerships where local communities are thinking ahead. 

Therefore continued government investment will help, given the scale of current disruption particularly affecting groups like women, racialized communities, Indigenous peoples, newcomers and youth. We look forward to continuing to work closely with the federal, provincial and territorial governments, and with our partner organizations to together test approaches, generate evidence and scale promising initiatives so that individuals and economic sectors are prepared for a competitive future. 

Media Contact

Eglantine Ronfard
Communications Manager
Future Skills Centre

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