Ontario government announces $124 million to help youth find jobs

The provincial government announces $124 million to help youth find jobs. Global News

Eighteen-year-old Amanda Gurney suffers from anxiety and depression which makes it hard for her to find work. She says the provinces’ new employment-planning counselling program (EPC) really helped her find a placement and secure a job at Morello’s Independent Grocer in Peterborough.

“Going to EPC was very useful, probably the best thing I’ve done for myself in a long time and it was just a great experience,” said Gurney.

On Tuesday, the Ontario government announced an investment of $124 million to help youth aged 15 to 29 to find jobs in a new program called the Employing Young Talent Incentive.

READ MORE: Ontario Liberals promise to boost funding for special needs education

“There were a lot of people that needed help getting jobs because either they had been fired or were having trouble or they just never had one before so I was in a class with them and we all just kind of, it was just a group of people that you wouldn’t think would click. By the end of the four weeks, we were all great friends.”

Story continues below advertisement

If you are an employer, you can get $1,000 to $2,000 for hiring and retaining a young person if you are :

— a small business operator with fewer than 100 employees, through employment service

— an employer of any size, through youth job connection.

You may also qualify for other financial help.

READ MORE: Liberals attempt to calm fears of faith-based groups over summer jobs program

Owner of Morello’s Independent Grocer, Dave Morello, says he’s hired at least 20 youth employees through this new program.

“For hiring now, we’ll contact the EPC and we’ll tell them what jobs we are hiring for, what sort of qualifications or what sort of availability we are looking for, and they’ll screen and forward us resumes. We do the interviewing of course, and then we take care of the hiring,” Morello said.

With summer around the corner, young people can also join the youth job connection summer program. It gives youth at least 20 hours of paid training to prepare them for the workplace, a summer job that could last eight weeks and mentorship, job coaching and help to get back into school after the program ends.

For more information on these programs, visit and click on Employment Ontario.