Only 3,300 laid-off workers have enrolled in the provincial
government's Second Career job-retraining program, even though there is
enough room for 20,000 people.
Premier Dalton McGuinty announced
the program to much fanfare in June 2008. The $355 million, three-year
effort is part of a $1.5 billion skills program at the centre of the
Liberal government's 2008 budget, as well as its five-point economic
Second Career is designed to help laid-off workers find
jobs in their communities. The program can pay up to $28,000 – or more
in some cases – in grants to help cover tuition for retraining and
items such as books, living expenses, travel and care for dependants,
according to the government website.
But critics say eligibility criteria are too narrow and red tape prevents easy access to the program.
It seems a better publid relations gesture than a program so far.