Single parent employment growing

Up to 100 income assistance clients a week signing up for job training, child care and transportation, minister Michelle Stilwell says

Social Development Minister Michelle Stilwell

The B.C. government’s new training and employment program for single parents on income assistance has grown to 2,500 applicants in its first five months.

Social Development Minister Michelle Stilwell said she is encouraged by the continued growth of applicants, with 60 to 100 people per week applying at WorkBC employment centres. The majority are women, and most are required to seek employment as a condition of assistance once their children are three years or older.

“One of the good things that I see is that about two thirds of those clients who have come forward have employment obligations, but one third are not actually obligated to look for work, and they are looking for work,” Stilwell said.

The program covers tuition, daycare and transportation costs for up to a year of on-the-job training or education towards in-demand jobs for single parents on social assistance or disability payments. The benefits can continue for up to the first year of employment, including extension of government-paid dental and other health benefits.

It replaces the previous system, often referred to as the welfare trap, where single parents would lose their assistance payments and benefits if they went back to school to train for a job.

According to the ministry’s latest monthly report, 179 single parents have started jobs since the program began Sept. 1. More than 200 have started training programs.

The largest work category for training is nurse aides and orderlies in health care facilities, where employment counsellors have identified jobs are available.

Other skills in demand are office administration, industrial trades and truck and heavy equipment operation.


Just Posted

BM&TS show ‘a tale as old as time’

The theatre group produced Beauty and the Beast.

Video: MP hears pot, pipeline and politics concerns

South Okanagan-West Kootenay MP hosts town hall forum in Penticton

Needles killer frightened many in our town: BC author

Roy Bugera disrupted life in a quiet Vancouver Island village before moving to Arrow Lakes

RCMP investigate stabbing incident

Injuries were non-life threatening, RCMP report

Health Minister says coming changes will make difference in rural communities.

“As a government, Premier Horgan is committed to improving the ambulance service.”

REPLAY: B.C. this week in video

In case you missed it, here’s a look at replay-worthy highlights from across the province this week

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

Some surprises in new book about B.C. labour movement

“On the Line” charts history of the union movement back to the 1800s

B.C. cyclist races to first win of the season in New Zealand

Casey Brown captures Enduro title by more than two minutes at Crankworx Rotorua

Notorious Russian troll farm also took swipes at Canadian targets

Targets included oil infrastructure and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Cirque du Soleil aerialist dies after fall during Florida show

Longtime performer fell while performing in VOLTA

Canada earns second Paralympic Games silver in 20 years

Held 1-0 lead in para hockey game from 12:06 of first to dying seconds of third and lost in overtime

LETTERS: Two views of oil pipeline protests

U.S. and other petroleum-rich countries aren’t cutting production

Canadian Paralympic team picked up record 28 medals

The 55 athletes strong had set a cautious goal of 17 medals for PyeongChang

Most Read