Apprentices Fixed with New Support: Ontario announces $2.5 million grant

Toronto, Ontario — The Government of Canada announced a new grant to help apprentices re-secure work amid the pandemic.

The Ontario Tools Grant will provide apprentices with $2.5 million in 2020-21 and $7.5 million in 2021-22. The program will assist apprentices in the purchase of tools, protective equipment, manuals and clothing required for their trades.

The funding amounts for the Grant program will be distributed as follows:

  • $1,000 for those in motive power sector trades;
  • $600 for those in construction and industrial sector trades;
  • $400 for those in service sector trades.

To be eligible for the new grant, apprentices must meet the following requirements:

  • completed level 1 training on or after April 1, 2020;
  • an active registered training agreement; and
  • been registered as an apprentice for at least 12 months.

The government also announced that they are forgiving more than $10 million in outstanding loans owed by apprentices for tool purchases made at the beginning of their careers.

“Hospitality workers and our skilled tradespeople have been among those hardest hit by this pandemic. These new programs will ensure they’re ready to get back on the job and play an important role in our economic recovery,” said Doug Ford in an online release.

So far, The Loans for Tools Program has allowed thousands of new apprentices to buy tools, equipment, clothing, manuals and code books required for their trade. About 19,000 apprentices who participated in the program owed, on average, $495.

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