- Youth Engagement
- Promoting NL
- Quality of Life
- Culture & Diversity
- Incentives to Stay & Return
DIRECTION 4: EMPLOYMENT AND JOB CREATION
The Provincial Government, young people, partners and communities will work together to create a province of choice in Newfoundland and Labrador. Together.
Increase access to quality jobs and workplaces among youth by:
- increasing access to opportunities to help young people gain meaningful work experience to help them fulfill their career goals; and
- supporting the development of quality jobs and safe workplaces that provide young people with opportunities to pursue new challenges, develop new skills, and enjoy the quality of life they desire.
Priorities and Current Initiatives
Key priorities we need to consider...
- Employment is the number one priority for young people in considering their options of where to live and work.
Student debt was identified as a factor that influences young people's decisions to leave the province. They are seeking well-paying jobs to help them pay off their debt after they graduate. However, during the youth engagement process, many other factors also came to the forefront related to young people's employment priorities. Young people spoke to:
- the need to foster better transitions between school and work through more work experience opportunities and access to quality entry-level jobs;
- their desire for jobs that provide growth and professional development while continuing on their career path;
- the importance of safe, quality work environments; and
- the need to generate employment opportunities by focusing on entrepreneurship and long-term economic development to build a sustainable, diversified economy that is not dependent on a single resource, and that is environmentally-friendly.
We have a strong foundation to build on...
- The Department of Human Resources, Labour and Employment, other departments and post-secondary institutions currently support a suite of student work experience programs for summer jobs and internship placements.
The Provincial Government has taken steps towards increasing wages and creating family-friendly policies such as:
- continuing to implement increases to the minimum wage to reach its commitment of $10/hour by 2010;
- continuing to work with the Federal Government to advocate changes to modernize the Employment Insurance system, including parental benefits; and
- introducing a parental supplement.
The Provincial Government has made ongoing investments to strengthen its system of providing career information and career information supports. For example:
- the Career Development 2201 course is a core requirement for high school graduation;
- 10 new career resource professionals have been placed in the school system to work with students through a Career Education Partnership Initiative between the Departments of Human Resources, Labour and Employment and Education;
- the Department of Human Resources, Labour and Employment is currently establishing a network of 14 Career Work Centres throughout the province and will recently launched www.JobsinNL.ca to provide employers with a free job posting service and to help ensure job seekers have a centralized, one-stop site to find local employment opportunities; and
- the Provincial Government continues to work with the Federal Government and other Provinces and Territories on the Forum of Labour Market Ministers to act on recommendations from the recently completed report by the Federal High Level Panel on Labour Market Information.
- The Provincial Government works with Business, Labour, and Education partners through the Labour Market Committee of the Strategic Partnership Council to ensure its labour market programs are responsive to current needs.
- This year the Province will be assuming responsibility for delivering employment programs under a devolved Labour Market Development Agreement, valued at over $133M per year. In light of this significant development, Government will also be undertaking an extensive labour market review that will include a focus on youth employment programs and services.
The Provincial Government is committed to supporting quality workplaces.
The Public Service has been taking the lead and setting the example in terms of effective human resource policies. The Public Service Commission (PSC) and the Public Service Secretariat (PSS) has just announced the establishment of a student employment bureau (SEB). Furthermore, Government is:
- implementing its Strategic HR Plan that will provide examples for other employers in the province of best practices for recruitment and retention, especially among women and persons with disabilities; and
- approaching NAPE to explore and test options to increase flexibility within collective agreements to assist in the retention of youth.
- This Fall, the Provincial Government will partner with the Business Coalition and Students In Free Enterprise (SIFE) at Memorial University to implement an online human resource toolkit for employers.
- The Provincial Government recently announced new investments under the Labour Market Agreement to enhance workplace-based training and supports.
- The Department of Innovation Trade and Rural Development (INTRD) has a suite of programs and services to support regional economic development and entrepreneurship. It also invests in programs specifically for youth such as the Business Wings program and the Getting the Message Out program.
- INTRD supports the ongoing development of co-operatives throughout the province: http://www.nlfc.coop/.
- The Provincial Government has made significant investments towards long-term, sustainable economic development through the Energy Plan, Innovation Strategy, and Comprehensive Regional Diversification Strategy. Furthermore, this goal is reflected in the Business Plans of 2008-2011 for the Departments of Innovation, Trade and Rural Development, (INTRD), Business, Tourism, Culture and Recreation, Natural Resources, and Fisheries and Aquaculture.
Actions to Support Youth Retention and Attraction
Experience, Summer Jobs, and Entry Level Jobs
- We will support an annual Forum on Youth Recruitment and Retention to provide opportunities for young people to meet with
key stakeholders to discuss youth employment issues and identify proactive measures to address emerging challenges.
Themes for the annual forum will be developed in partnership with the Youth Partnership Forum, business, and labour sectors. Consistent with priorities identified by youth and stakeholders during the development of the Youth Retention and Attraction Strategy, a proposed theme for the first annual forum will focus on best practices for engaging young workers in the workplace, including creating labour market pathways through mentorships, experiential-based learning, and personal development.
- We will expand and enhance the Graduate Employment Program.
- We will support the Advancing Non-Profit and Voluntary Investments in Learning (ANVIL). This initiative will help advance work-term opportunities for co-operative education students while providing support to non-profit and voluntary groups that continue to invest in the social, cultural, and economic base of Newfoundland and Labrador.
- We will expand access to existing internship opportunities and summer jobs to increase access to internship placements and summer jobs for approximately 100 secondary and post-secondary students each year.
Jobs, Benefits, and Wages
- We will develop a feasibility paper on family-friendly policy options for Newfoundland and Labrador to help identify incentives and programs that could be implemented to attract and retain young families in Newfoundland and Labrador. Recent examples, such as the province's Parental Supplement to enhance maternity benefits are examples of the types of public incentives that could be implemented.
Career Planning and Information
- We will expand access to career information resources to assist local service providers in helping to ensure young people throughout the province have access to reliable career information and orientation activities they need to make good decisions about their future training and career options. For more information click here.
- We will support the Public Service in examining and implementing best practices for retention of young workers in the Public Service.
- We will support the Public Service and Office for Youth Engagement in establishing a Provincial Government Support Network for Young Employees.
- We will expand Professional Development Opportunities for participants in the Graduate Employment Program.
- We will support youth in accessing information and resources to increase their awareness of workplace safety issues and better prepare them to assume a leadership role in influencing the evolution of safe workplace cultures as they enter the workforce. This initiative will provide access to resources, such as the national online program "Passport to Safety Program", for young people in Newfoundland and Labrador.
Business Supports and Economic Development
- We will implement a Young Entrepreneurs and Innovators Program to provide wage subsidies and skills enhancement support to youth striving to establish and grow self-employment opportunities especially in rural areas.
- We will develop a best practices manual for family-friendly workplace practices.
- We will support the Entrepreneurship Forum to target youth entrepreneurs from each region and enable them to collaborate with a panel of business advisors for mentorship and direction.
- We will introduce a grant program for businesses to implement innovative workplace skills development practices for students.
- We will introduce an Export Internship Program to support employers in hiring qualified graduates with training in international business.
- We will continue to support the ongoing development of entrepreneurial information resources and employer recruitment and retention resources with a focus on youth.
Related Recommendations from the Canadian Policy Research Networks
Download the CPRN Report "Making Newfoundland and Labrador a Province of Choice"
- Strengthen partnerships with public agencies and the private and non-profit sectors to increase intern training opportunities and co-op programs.
- Encourage the private and non-profit sectors to create partnerships with high schools, colleges and universities to develop entry-level job opportunities that provide initial career work experience.
- Regularly increase the minimum wage.
- Enhance and expand local partnerships among schools, post-secondary institutions and employers to help shape the curriculum for career development.
- Work with the school system and existing career development/employment offices to make understanding the labour market information system a part of the high school curriculum.
- Enhance opportunities to strengthen the role and service of career counsellors and guidance counsellors.
- Continue to emphasize protection for young workers under occupational health and safety laws.
- Work with employer and labour representatives to encourage the private sector to support their employees through skills and career development programs.
- Collaborate with small business organizations to implement career development strategies for employees.
- Further youth entrepreneurship by encouraging opportunities for young people to engage with experienced business owners and entrepreneurs...interactive information on youth entrepreneurship should be readily available.
- Continue to support the development of co-operatives in rural Newfoundland and Labrador.
- Encourage entrepreneurs to create businesses to support long-term and diversified economic development with less reliance on non-renewable resources; encourage eco-tourism; and, protect the environment.
Quotes from Youth and Partners
".one thing I noticed out of today's discussion is a disconnect between what employers are currently doing and what youth are aware of. This is something we can take away and work on."
"Government needs to partner with industry leaders and organizations to ensure that employment opportunities for young people are competitive. Incentives such as competitive wage packages, permanent positions, medical benefits, continuing education and pension planning do make a difference."
"The issues of student debt and availability of entry level jobs are major factors that force our youth away."
"Keeping Newfoundlanders and Labradorians in the province is the most effective way to build the economy, keep wealth in the province, and support rural communities."
"Opportunities are required to provide youth with job experience to help them prepare for future employment opportunities and also to allow them to the opportunity to "test the waters" for future career choices."
"Creating a Province of Choice - A Youth Retention and Attraction Strategy for Newfoundland and Labrador". Available to download in pdf format.