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COVID-19 Updates News Labour
Alberta launches massive job support and training effort


May 20, 2021
By Government of Alberta (edited)

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Alberta Premier Jason Kenney announces the Jobs Now program.

More than 22,000 Albertans are projected to get back to work through the largest jobs training program in the province’s history.

The Alberta Jobs Now program will provide up to $370 million to help private and non-profit businesses support jobs for unemployed and underemployed Albertans across the province.

“We’re investing in Alberta’s economic recovery with financial support to provide job opportunities for unemployed Albertans. This is a long-term investment in working Albertans as we recover from the devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and recession,” says Alberta’s Premier Jason Kenney.

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Employers will be able to apply for a grant that covers 25 per cent of an employee’s salary for a 52-week period up to a maximum of $25,000 per employee. The grant can be used to cover salary or training costs. Employers who hire persons with disabilities will receive a grant 1.5 times higher than the amount they receive for other new employees, up to $37,500.

“The Jobs Now program will give post-secondary students access to the job opportunities they need. Many of our students have been impacted by the pandemic, the global recession and previous years of economic challenge. This program will help our students find meaningful job opportunities and kick-start their professional careers,” says Demetrios Nicolaides, provincial minister of Advanced Education.

Employers will be able to apply at alberta.ca/jobsnow as of 9 a.m., May 20. They can apply for funding for up to 20 new employees. Employers have until Aug. 31 to apply. A second intake will open on Sept. 15 and close on Dec. 31. A third intake will be announced at a later date. Applications will be assessed on a first come, first served basis.

To be eligible for the program, private sector business or non-profit organizations must use the funding to hire unemployed Albertans in a new or vacant position. The new hire must reside and work in Alberta and must not have worked for the employer within the past 90 days. Eligibility requirements can be found here

Employers can choose to have payments issued in 1 or 2 payments. One payment at up to 100% of the grant after new hires have been employed for 52 weeks, or,  two payments at half of the eligible grant paid when the new hires have been employed for 3 months and the other half paid when the new hires have been employed for 52 weeks.

The Alberta Jobs Now program will provide up to $370 million to help private sector businesses and non-profit organizations hire and train unemployed Albertans. $185 million in funding is available through federal transfers from the Government of Canada through the Workforce Development Agreement and $185 million is available through provincial funds.