Ontario to launch virtual training portal for tourism, hospitality workers impacted by COVID-19

Ontario to launch virtual training portal for tourism, hospitality workers impacted by COVID-19
TORONTO -- The Ontario government is launching a new online portal to help people who have lost their jobs in industries hit hardest by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Premier Doug Ford and Minister of Labour Monte McNaughton made the announcement at a news conference Friday, saying the new action centre will help support up to 7,000 unemployed tourism and hospitality workers.

"Things are still tough for a lot of people in our province now. The hospitality sector has been particularly hit very hard, McNaughton said.

Unite Here Local 75, which represents workers in the sector, tell us that 90 per cent of their members have been laid off and that s why we have to step in and act."

The virtual action centre is expected to support workers by offering online counselling and skills training.

We are investing almost $2 million to create a virtual action centre to help impacted workers upgrade their skills as we gradually and safely reopen the economy, Ford said.

This skills training will ensure these people can get back to work with the skills and know-how to help businesses adapt to the new environment."

The government also announced a Ontario Tools Grant to support eligible apprentices in the motive power, construction and industrial and service sector trades to help them purchase equipment needed to start their careers

"As more construction gets going, we are making sure our skills trade people are set up for success, making sure they have the tools they need, Ford said.

This summer, we are launching the all-new Ontario Tools Grant program a program that will help up to 11,600 apprentices get a head start in their careers in skills trade."

The premier said the province is also forgiving more than $10 million in outstanding loans owed by apprentices for tool purchases made at the beginning of their careers.
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