Toronto – The Honourable Jason Kenney, Minister of Employment and Social Development, has announced that the Government of Canada has provided a total of 500,000 apprenticeship grants to Canadians since 2007 to help them pursue careers in the skilled trades.
Kenney spoke with apprentices at a recent event hosted by George Brown College to celebrate this milestone and handed out apprenticeship grants to those who have recently completed their training.
The Apprenticeship Incentive Grant and Apprenticeship Completion Grant are cash grants that encourage Canadians to pursue and complete apprenticeship training in Red Seal trades. Through these grants, apprentices receive up to $4,000, which can be used to pay for tuition, tools or other expenses. To date, the Government has provided nearly $700 million in apprenticeship grants.
Kenney also highlighted other government measures to create opportunities for apprentices, such as the introduction of the Canada Apprentice Loan, support for training programs and tax credits such as the Tool Tax Deduction for apprentices and tradesmen, and the Apprenticeship Job Creation Tax Credit for employers.
Kenney also addressed the need for a parity of esteem that will put the skilled trades on an equal footing with a university education. He expressed concern about negative stereotypes that exist towards the skilled trades and the false perception that a university education is more valuable than an apprenticeship.
“The apprenticeship grants are an important way of recognizing the hard work apprentices dedicate to learning their trade,” said Serge Buy, executive director, National Association of Career Colleges. “By rewarding both progress and completion, the grants motivate and encourage apprentices on the path to certification.”