Oct 29, 2021

How the Minister of Employment and Social Development Canada can fuel growth

Canadians everywhere want to look past the pandemic and know what comes next. Strong and sustained economic growth is critical for our country to move beyond recovering to where we were before the pandemic began and to close the gap with our global competitors. As the engines of job creation all across the country, businesses are ready to work with government and Parliamentarians to drive forward what it will take to grow.

Now, the Canadian Chamber of Commerce is writing “mandate letters” to members of the Cabinet with policy priorities that will support growth of the Canadian economy.

The Minister of Employment and Social Development Canada should:

  • Build closer collaboration among governments, employers and educational institutions to succeed in the 21st century economy, Canada needs a 21st century workforce, which it can only achieve through better communication and collaboration among the key players.
  • Ensure Statistics Canada collects comprehensive forward-looking data on labour market needs. This information will inform education (including upskilling and reskilling) policy and improve the navigation of existing education programs and immigration policies.
  • Create flexible, accessible, navigable upskilling and reskilling options to foster a culture of lifelong learning can create talent pipelines through targeted matchmaking programs. This approach will help build resilient employees and businesses alike, reduce risks for all groups and create a more diverse workforce.
  • Apply a gender / GBA+ perspective to initiatives it develops and funds for training, upskilling, reskilling and job transitions.  This includes rigorous labour market analysis to ensure that women are advancing into high-demand sectors and jobs, as well as tailoring upskilling and reskilling training to the realities of women’s learning styles and time availabilities. 
  • Work with the Minister of Families, Children and Social Development to remove tax barriers for childcare expenses. Make childcare an eligible business expense for SMEs, remove the requirement for the lower-income spouse to receive the childcare deduction and permit SME owners receiving non-eligible dividend income to claim childcare expenses against that income.
  • Undertake the recently announced Employment Insurance review consultations in a comprehensive, data-driven and tripartite-led manner among government, business and labour. This approach will ensure that EI’s governance, programs, policies and operations are sustainable, adaptable, non-partisan, and relevant for current and future generations of Canadian employers and employees.
  • Provide Canadians with on-going flexible education and skills development opportunities in digital and cybersecurity fields.

To see all 21 of our mandate letters to ministers, click here.

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