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Human Resources, Labour and Employment
July 17, 2009

Targeted Initiative for Older Workers Developed for Northern Peninsula

A new Targeted Initiative for Older Workers (TIOW) was announced today by the Honourable Susan Sullivan, Minister of Human Resources, Labour and Employment, for the Town of Englee and the surrounding area.

�The Provincial Government is committed to addressing the needs of people in communities impacted by the downsizing or closure of key local employers,� said Minister Susan Sullivan. �Displaced workers who have made a lifelong contribution to one industry or company can be the most vulnerable when downsizing or closures take place, and this initiative is designed to address that reality. The project we are implementing for people in Englee and neighboring communities will help 30 unemployed individuals aged 55-64 enhance their skills so that they can transition to self-employment or employment in a new field.�

This employment support program is a federal-provincial cost-shared initiative (70 per cent federal, 30 per cent provincial) that provides tailored support to communities experiencing continuously high levels of unemployment or significant industrial downsizing (i.e. downsizing that impacts at least 20 per cent of the local labour force). All TIOW projects provide employment assistance activities such as employment counseling, assistance with resume writing, and interview techniques. In addition, all projects include at least two other employability improvement activities and may include basic or specific skills upgrading, employer-based work experience where wage subsidies are provided to the employer, or community-based work experience.

�This project will offer mature displaced workers a comprehensive, respectful, hands-on opportunity to diversify their skills so that they can pursue new employment prospects,� said the Honourable Trevor Taylor, MHA for the Straits-White Bay North District. �I am very pleased to see this initiative in my area. I commend the town council and the College of the North Atlantic for leading this project, and I look forward to seeing positive results for area residents.�

For this specific project, the Englee Town Council is the project sponsor in partnership with the College of the North Atlantic. The college�s St. Anthony Campus will start the project by providing 16 weeks of skills development training to participants. Training will include eight weeks of orientation and skill assessment, theory and practical-based classroom training and employment readiness skills. This is followed by eight weeks of specific skills training in two areas: traditional Newfoundland and Labrador crafts and heritage carpentry basics.

The town council will then supervise 14 weeks of employment. As the work-based component provides an opportunity to restore heritage buildings in the community, this will enhance the tourism sector for this region, and those completing the heritage carpentry basics will then be qualified to seek employment with construction companies or become self-employed.

�The Town of Englee is pleased to partner with both levels of government and the College of the North Atlantic to offer employment support to a number of older, displaced workers,� said Edgar Fillier, Mayor of Englee. �This program will not only provide immediate help to these individuals, but also diversify our local economy by enhancing tourism and craft production.�

The Town of Englee expects to start this project in August and has commenced the selection process for participants and a co-ordinator. Interested parties can call 709-866-2711 or e-mail for further information. The initiative in Englee represents the first of many TIOW projects that will be established in communities throughout the province this year. These projects will be announced in the coming weeks.

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Media contacts:

Jennifer Collingwood
Director of Communications
Department of Human Resources, Labour and Employment
709-729-0753, 690-2498
Lynette Carroll
Executive Assistant
Department of Transportation & Works
Edgar W. Fillier
Town of Englee
Frederick Russell
Campus Administrator
College of the North Atlantic St. Anthony Campus

2009 07 17                            9:45 a.m.

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