Creating More Economic Opportunities for Women in Ontario
AJAX – The Ontario government is investing $6.9 million over the next three years to expand and enhance the Investing in Women’s Futures program. The program, which provides resources and training opportunities to help women develop in-demand skills for jobs, is being expanded to up to 10 new centres and further funding is being provided to the 23 centres currently offering the program.
“Many women face additional challenges participating in the workforce, such as child care and caregiving responsibilities,” said Charmaine Williams, Associate Minister of Women's Social and Economic Opportunity. “We are expanding the Investing in Women’s Futures program to ensure that women have the supports and in-demand skills they need to pursue good-paying jobs or pursue further education that can help lead to financial independence.” The Investing in Women’s Futures program provides employment training opportunities and supports for women facing social and economic barriers, including abuse and isolation, so they can overcome barriers, increase well-being, build skills and gain employment. The new service delivery sites will be selected through a call for applications, which is now open to eligible organizations until Tuesday, November 8, 2022.
“The Investing in Women’s Futures program helps women develop the skills they need to build economic independence and financial stability so they can invest in themselves and their families,” said Peter Bethlenfalvy, Minister of Finance. “By providing an additional $6.9 million over three years, our government is helping to deliver the critical wrap-around supports, skills training and services vulnerable women need to live free from violence and build a better life.”
As a result of COVID-19, women and gender-diverse Ontarians have faced additional challenges, such as increased economic insecurity, greater burden of caregiving responsibilities and a rise in the incidence of domestic violence. Young women, mothers of young children, racialized women, single mothers, Indigenous women, immigrant women, women with disabilities and women without university degrees have been most affected.
This additional $6.9 million investment builds on the $18 million in funding the government is already investing from 2022-2025 in 35 community-based organizations and educational institutions. These investments support the Investing in Women’s Futures and Women’s Economic Security Program to help women facing socio-economic barriers develop in-demand skills to enter or re-enter the workforce.
In 2021-22, the Investing in Women’s Futures program helped more than 1,300 women across the province secure employment, start their own businesses or pursue further training and/or education.
In June 2021, the government launched Ontario’s Task Force on Women and the Economy to provide advice on addressing the unique and disproportionate economic barriers women face.
Enhancing the Investing in Women’s Futures program is part of the 2022 Budget: Ontario’s Plan to Build, the government’s plan to help deliver better jobs and bigger pay cheques for workers, help keep costs down for families, and get shovels in the ground for highways, transit, hospitals and other key infrastructure.