New Brunswick unveils 3-year blueprint for stronger labour force

Apprenticeships, women in trades programs among 44 'priority action items'

New Brunswick has unveiled its blueprint for the next three years to ensure the province supports the development of a strong labour force.

The Labour Force and Skills Development Strategy 2013-2016 includes three main themes that consist of 44 priority action items, the province said. Those themes are:

• support the K-12 and post-secondary education systems to prepare students adequately for labour force needs

•support learning and skills development

•support the retention and attraction of highly skilled individuals.

Some of the action items outlined in the strategy are:

•Expand successful pilot projects in schools throughout the province, such as the Teen Apprenticeship Program in Saint John.

•Aggressively pursue the development of a regionally streamlined apprenticeship program through the Atlantic Workforce Partnership.

•The provincial government, with leaders of the private sector, will conduct labour market research on each of the six strategic sectors, as well as the energy, mining and oil and natural gas sectors to assist in identifying which occupations are experiencing labour market imbalances today and forecast the positions required for the future.

•Implement enhanced employer wage incentives for priority group clients to assist in securing labour force attachments and opportunities.

•Work to develop and implement a “women in trades" program, which will target job-ready women interested in pursuing training and/or employment in the trades.

•Fund a First Nations co-ordinator who will facilitate linkages and augment access to literacy, essential skills and apprenticeship services on First Nations communities.

•Revitalize the Population Growth Strategy for fiscal 2013-14.

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