Ontario’s Action Plan Connects Workers Most Affected by COVID-19 with Jobs in the Region of Peel

Published on November 09, 2020

Ontario’s 2020 Budget provides $180.5 million to connect workers impacted by COVID-19 with retraining, and to help industries find skills they need

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MISSISSAUGA — The Ontario government is providing $180.5 million to connect workers in the tourism and hospitality sector and others most affected by the pandemic to training and jobs. Part of Ontario’s Action Plan: Protect, Support, Recover, this investment includes a skilled trades strategy, an additional $100 million of dedicated investments through Employment Ontario for skills training, a redesigned Second Career program, and $59.5 million to acquire in-demand skills.

“These initiatives will help job seekers, particularly those hardest hit by COVID-19, get the skills they need,” said Rudy Cuzzetto, MPP for Mississauga-Lakeshore. “This training supports workers and employers alike. It also addresses long-standing gaps in skills training which, unaddressed, would be a barrier to a strong economic recovery.”

Between February and May 2020, employment declined by 1,156,500, or 15.3 per cent. Among those most impacted by the pandemic include workers in the tourism and hospitality sector, youth aged 15 to 24, and women. While there has been a strong recovery in jobs, employment in October remained 287,400 jobs below its pre‑COVID‑19 level and unemployment remained at 9.6 per cent.

“Now is the time to invest in retraining our workers, so they are ready to contribute to the recovery of our province,” said Rod Phillips, Minister of Finance. “Ontario’s Action Plan: Protect, Support, Recover will help job seekers, particularly those hardest hit by COVID-19, to get the skills they need.”

“The investment our government is making to support the skilled trades will help grow the industry and open up countless new opportunities for families in Brampton and beyond," said Prabmeet Sarkaria, Associate Minister of Small Business and Red Tape Reduction, and MPP for Brampton South. “At a critical time like this, training hardworking Ontarians and linking them to good paying jobs will help us boost our recovery.”

To help people upgrade their skills, the government is investing an additional $180.5 million over three years in micro-credentials, employment services and training programs, including apprenticeships. The Province is taking comprehensive action to help get people back to work and contribute to Ontario’s economic recovery, including a focus on the groups and sectors most impacted by the pandemic.

“We are committed to taking action to support Ontario’s workers, and Ontario’s economic recovery,” said Monte McNaughton, Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development. “Our Skilled Trades Strategy will support businesses and help prepare people for jobs by creating a flexible skilled trades and apprenticeship system that will best prepare Ontario workers for the jobs of today and tomorrow.”



“We know that COVID-19 has drastically changed the employment landscape,” said Nina Tangri, MPP for Mississauga-Streetsville. “This $180 million investment will help give Ontarians the skills and knowledge needed to retrain, gain meaningful employment, and contribute to our economic recovery.”

- Nina Tangri, MPP for Mississauga–Streetsville

“COVID-19 has completely changed the job market and employment landscape. This funding is timely and thoughtful in that it specifically targets those hardest hit and gives them opportunities to rethink their careers, to retrain and provides them with the tools to get the jobs they want, not just the jobs they need. This funding will support people to get jobs they will never trade.”

- Deepak Anand, MPP for Mississauga–Malton

“Skilled workers are the backbone of Ontario’s vibrant economy. We need to continue investing in them, to give them the tools and training they need to excel in their chosen work field, and attract new generations to Ontario’s labor force.”

- Sheref Sabawy, MPP for Mississauga–Erin Mills

“It is clear that COVID-19 has had a profound impact on workers in Ontario across many industries. By focusing on initiatives to help job seekers and job creators alike through strong commitments to address skill gaps through retraining efforts, we are addressing barriers that hinders the economic potential of Ontario. Our government knows that the long-term recovery of our province from the impact of COVID-19 will be driven by growth, and this plan emphasizes that. When we invest in Ontario workers, our entire province benefits.”

- Natalia Kusendova, MPP for Mississauga Centre

“For too long Ontarians have been waiting for support to get back into the workforce. This investment set out by the Province of Ontario will provide the framework and tools to make that transition. I am extremely grateful to the Minister of Finance for making our workforce a priority in Ontario’s Action Plan for recovery.”

- Kaleed Rasheed, MPP for Mississauga East–Cooksville


Quick Facts

  • Ontario's Action Plan: Protect, Support, Recover includes an additional $100 million of dedicated investments through Employment Ontario for skills training, a redesigned Second Career program, and $59.5 million to acquire in-demand skills.
  • From June to October, employment in Ontario has risen by 868,600 jobs.
  • Ontario’s real GDP is projected to decline by 6.5 per cent in 2020 and rise by 4.9 per cent in 2021. Ontario’s economic growth is expected to continue after 2021, with real GDP projected to rise 3.5 per cent in 2022 before moderating to 2.0 per cent growth in 2023.
  • Ontario was the first jurisdiction in Canada to release a fiscal outlook that reflected the impacts of the COVID-19 crisis in its March 25, 2020 Ontario’s Action Plan: Responding to COVID-19.


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Office of Rudy Cuzzetto, MPP
(905) 274-8228