Better Jobs Ontario (BJO) program aims to support unemployed individuals needing skills training to help find employment in in-demand occupations with demonstrated labour market prospects in Ontario. The BJO program intends to help individuals rapidly attach to employment by the most cost-effective path.
BJO is appropriate for individuals who plan their future, commit to an Employment Service Plan (ESP)/Employment Action Plan (EAP), and actively pursue its implementation. It is intended for individuals who need more finances to access training.
To receive up to $28,000 in funding for skills training, there are specific criteria a laid-off/unemployed/gig worker/newcomer individual to meet. We are sharing the Fast Track Stream program based on the guidelines.
To be eligible for the Fast Track Stream, individuals must meet all of the following criteria:
- Individuals with a high school education or lower and individuals whose employment experience has not required more than a high school education (e.g., laid off from NOC skill level C or D);
- Have been laid off on or after March 1, 20202, from a sector identified as highly impacted by COVID-19;
- Have no more than a high school education and/or have been laid off from an occupation that required no more than high school education (i.e. laid off from NOC C or D occupations) regardless of the individual’s education;
- Are seeking training for identified in-demand occupations in provincial or local community priority areas
- Be unemployed
- Be a resident of Ontario
- Be a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident or meet the 900 series Social Insurance Number (SIN) policy set out in Section 2.3.4 of the BJO guidelines;
- Not be ineligible
Laid off from a COVID-19 Highly Impacted Sector
To be eligible for the Fast Track Stream, clients must have been laid off from a ministry-defined, highly impacted sector.
Sectors have been identified as highly impacted when the sectors either:
• Have above-average employment loss as a whole; or
• Contain one or more subsectors with above-average employment loss, as long as the overarching sector has an above-average share of ‘low-skilled’ workers.
As of November 30, 2020, the current highly impacted sectors identified by the ministry include:
• Accommodation and Food Services;
• Business, building and other support services;
• Transportation and warehousing;
• Wholesale and retail trade;
• Information, culture and recreation;
• Forestry, fishing, mining, oil and gas; and
• Other services (except public administration), o Includes personal and laundry services.
The training period (between the start and end date, including breaks/vacation and placement) can be at least 52 weeks. This excludes a maximum of one calendar year (12 months) for LBS or language training. The maximum duration of skills training, LBS training, and language training may be extended to meet the special needs of persons with disabilities.
If required, the maximum amount of funding – $28,000 – can also be exceeded for such persons at the discretion of Regional Directors or their delegate under the Delegation of Financial Management Authority.
Skills training must lead to a credential, such as a micro-credential, certificate, or diploma, as long as it can be attained within one year or less.
To be eligible for Better Jobs Ontario:
• A certificate or diploma must signify that all of the skills and knowledge required for employment in a specific training occupation have been attained;
• A micro-credential must either provide a skill or set of skills that are in demand and expected to lead to employment without further credentials or fill a Better Jobs Ontario Guidelines 26 skills gap for the participant with the other skills relevant to the target occupation.
We offer certificate and diploma programs for you to retrain, and if you qualify, you may receive up to $28,000 in funding. Please contact one of our student advisors today by completing this assessment!