The province is embarking on a new labour market partnership with the BC First Nations Forestry Council.
The Council is receiving $80,000 to lead the First Nations Regional Forestry Opportunity Studies Engagements program with the goal of identifying labour demands and opportunities within the industry.
“We know how interested they are in ensuring they are engaged in active in forestry in our province, says Jobs MInister Shirley Bond. “One of the things we know, we want to make sure we understand the labour market demands from the labour market perspective.”
Bond says the project will help strengthen the industry for the entire province.
“This funding will allow them to do the work necessary to identify gaps where we might need skills and trades training type opportunities. Labour market partnerships are one of the tools we use to get better information so that we can shape the training programs that we need.”
The program is the first phase of a broader initiative to increase First Nations engagement with forestry.
While the government and the Council are partners on the project, Bond says the Council will take the lead.
“We’ll work in partnership with them but it will bring together members of the Aboriginal community and the forest sector industry to have a conversation about how we can ensure that First Nations have an opportunity to participate in the workforce.”
She says engaging First Nations youth will be an important aspect of the study.
The project is expected to wrap up in January 2017.