HR News Update

Canada's Government funds innovative new program to tackle labour shortages in the mining industry

Canada's Government is taking action with an innovative new program to address the projected shortage of up to 92,000 workers in the mining sector. The Honourable Gordon O'Connor, Minister of National Revenue, on behalf of the Honourable Monte Solberg, Minister of Human Resources and Social Development, announced a project that will help employers in the mining industry access untapped labour pools.

"Prime Minister Harper and our government are creating the best-educated, most skilled and most flexible work force in the world," said Minister O'Connor. "This investment will help the mining industry attract, recruit and retain workers often underrepresented in the mining sector, such as people with disabilities, older workers and women."

Minister O'Connor announced $147,000 in funding through the federal government's Sector Council Program to the Mining Industry Human Resource Council (MiHR) to undertake a Physical Demand Analysis project. The project will provide information on the physical demands of essential and non-essential job tasks in a variety of occupations in the mining industry, allowing employers to match workers with specific jobs and increase recruitment in underrepresented areas.

"The mining sector is high tech and no longer relies solely on physical strength of its workers," said Mr. Ryan Montpellier, Executive Director of MiHR. "By understanding the true physical demands of occupations in mining, we can broaden our labour pool, benefiting not only from additional resources, but also from the added value that diversity brings to the workplace."

The MiHR collaborates with various sector groups including employers, educators, organized labour, and Aboriginal groups to address human resources challenges facing the Canadian minerals and metals sector.

Canada's Sector Council Program plays a vital role in helping to meet the objectives set out in Advantage Canada, the Government of Canada's long-term economic plan, which sets a bold, but achievable goal: to have the best-educated, most-skilled, and most flexible work force in the world. Sector councils bring together governments, business, labour and educational stakeholders in key sectors to share ideas, concerns and perspectives about work force issues.

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