Program skips Terrace

A PROVINCIAL program to take people off of welfare and place them in northern construction jobs has skipped Terrace.

  • Oct. 14, 2012 6:00 a.m.

A PROVINCIAL program to take people off of welfare and place them in northern construction jobs has skipped Terrace.

Instead it’s focussing on Kitimat and Prince Rupert in the northwest and on Dawson Creek, Fort Nelson and Fort St. John in the northeast.

The plan, described as a pilot one for now, is to find and train 250 people overall with the expectation that at least 60 per cent of the recruits be on social assistance.

The BC Construction Association, which represents approximately 2,000 companies, has been hired to do the training thanks to a $2.92 million budget, explained an email received from the provincial jobs ministry’s communications office.

There was no direct reason provided as to why Terrace was not included on the pilot list.

“Depending on the success of the pilot, it is hoped this initiative can be expanded to other communities in need starting sometime in the new year,” the email added.

There’s going to be a formal evaluation of the pilot program in November.

The program, called Job Match, was heavily criticized when first proposed in the spring as being an attempt by the province to place southern welfare recipients in northern jobs.

Called Welfare Air by its detractors, the provincial NDP said provincial programs should first concentrate on training northern residents for northern jobs.

The pilot program’s emphasis is on placing northern residents first in northern jobs.

“Only in the event that a job opening cannot be filled by an individual in northern B.C. would relocation from another part of the province be considered,” the ministry continued.

“The level of support that will be provided to an individual relocating to fill a job opening will be negotiated on a case-by-case basis. One of the objectives of this pilot initiative is to determine what people need, and what a reasonable level of support to provide is.”

Two weeks ago, the provincial government announced it would spend $17 million on skills training.

Approximately $5 million of that is to come to northern post-secondary school institutions but how much will end up at Northwest Community College isn’t known.

Monthly jobless figures so far this year place the rate in the northwest in the 12 per cent range, nearly double the provincial average.

That’s despite large industrial projects now already underway in the region and more being planned.

Just Posted

Volunteers step up to the grill to help the Ksan Society

A group of volunteers from the Northwest Community College are flipping burgers, walking to help after this year’s Coldest Night of the Year fundraiser was cancelled.

Greyhound cleared to end routes in northern B.C., Vancouver Island

Company says nine routes have dropped 30% in ridership in last five years

UPDATE: Air quality advisory ended for Terrace

People with chronic underlying medical conditions should postpone strenuous exercise until the advisory is lifted.

Mills Memorial Hospital financing formula released

Regional taxpayers to pay $113.7 million for new facility.

Greyhound cleared to end routes in northern B.C., Vancouver Island

Company says nine routes have dropped 30% in ridership in last five years

Therapy dogs make appearance at B.C. Games

The St. John’s Ambulance therapy dog program launches a pilot project at the 2018 Kamloops B.C. Winter Games

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

Sticking the landing at the B.C. Games

Gymnasts talk competition, B.C. Winter Games, and teamwork in Kamloops

$153M in federal cash to fund child care, education training in B.C.

Bilateral agreement will create 1,370 new infant and toddler spaces

A B.C. woman talks her life in the sex trade

A view into the life from one Kelowna prostitute and the issues it can cause for women

Twitter feed prays for — instead of preying on — B.C. MLAs

Non-partisan Christian group wants to support politicians through personalized prayer

Mills Memorial Hospital financing formula released

Regional taxpayers to pay $113.7 million for new facility.

Hundreds march for justice in death of Winnipeg teen

Tina Fontaine was pulled from a river in 2014, her body wrapped in a blanket and weighed down by rocks

Most Read