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Published Date: August 10, 2007

2007-08-10 First Nations

AUTHORITY

Income and Employment Supports Act, Part 3 Section 20
Income Supports, Health and Training Benefits Regulation, Section 1(1)(d)

BACKGROUND/PRINCIPLES

The First Nations Training to Employment Program (FNTEP) supports the development of partnerships designed to create training and work experience projects that lead to employment for First Nations members. These partnerships will assist unemployed or marginally employed First Nations members (primarily living on reserve) gain the necessary skills training and/or work experience in projects to obtain and maintain long-term employment.

The objectives of First Nations Training to Employment Program are to:

  • Support First Nations members to obtain and maintain long-term, sustainable employment, and
  • Create workplace training opportunities for First Nations members in occupations that are in labour market demand, and
  • Support the development of partnerships between First Nations, industry and government.

On-Reserve Population: Band or First Nation is defined in the Indian Act as a body of Indians for whose common use and benefit lands have been set aside or monies held by the Government of Canada or declared by the Governor in Council to be a Band. Most Bands prefer to be referred to as First Nations. In this document, when the term “First Nation” is used in the context of the Indian Act, it refers to an Indian Act Band.

For consistency, the term “client(s)” is used throughout this document. Please note however, after a client is accepted into a Skills Investment training program, he/she becomes a learner, except in the case where their living allowance is funded by another source (i.e. Aboriginal Human Resource Development Agreement [AHRDA] holder or Indian and Northern Affairs Canada [INAC]). Currently, Alberta Employment, Immigration and Industry (AEII) Learner Benefits policies do not apply to the First Nations members participating in the First Nations Training to Employment Program.

POLICY

Eligible Clients Specific to First Nations Training to Employment

First Nations Training to Employment Program clients must be:

  • a First Nations member, unemployed or marginally employed, and
  • in need and benefit from skills training in order to obtain and maintain sustainable employment.

A minimum of 51% of clients in the First Nations Training to Employment Program project must be First Nations members (primarily living on-reserve).

For more information on client eligibility, see Eligible Clients – General.

Program Components

First Nations Training to Employment Program projects must:

  • Be initiated and managed by a First Nations Band, Treaty Council or Tribal Organization, and
  • Include a partnership between, First Nations, industry/employer and government, and
  • Be custom designed for the client group, and
  • Include classroom training and work experience when appropriate, and
  • Meet specific industry employment needs.

The range of program projects possible under the First Nations Training to Employment Program is dependent upon the training needs identified by the steering committee. There is significant flexibility in program design. The program can address:

  • Training from employability skills to occupational skills training, or
  • Work exposure, or
  • Job coaching and mentoring.

Program projects can be custom designed if required and must not duplicate existing programs.

All projects must include assessment and case management services. The purpose of a client assessment is to determine a client’s need for employment and/or support services, including: career and employment services, and/or program eligibility and financial benefits. Proper client assessment is key to clients receiving the most suitable supports to assist them to achieve their training and employment needs.

Funding Parameters

Alberta Employment, Immigration and Industry’s funding contribution can only be used to support direct training (e.g. instructor fees, training materials, equipment rental, tutors, etc.) and project management/coordinator costs. AEII’s funding contribution to First Nations Training to Employment Program projects cannot be used to support living allowance costs, nor used to purchase equipment or any other form of permanent asset (i.e. land or buildings).

Indian and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC), Alberta Region, will support First Nations on-reserve learners who have been accepted into and participating in a FNTEP project with INAC Learner Benefits. Client(s) must make a request for Learner Benefits to their First Nation Social Services Administrator or Issuing Authority with the supported documentation such as a letter stating individual’s name, band and dates of the project from the First Nation, Tribal Council, Training Provider or AEII Contract Services Coordinator associated with the contract. Client(s) can be funded by another source to provide for their training and living allowance costs (e.g. AHRDA holder).

See Income Support Policy Manual, Indian and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC), Alberta Region.

To ensure the success of the First Nations Training to Employment Program, adequate project funding must be in place. Before project funding is committed by AEII, a letter(s) indicating the specific level of anticipated support (financial and/or in-kind) by all partners must be provided to AEII.

See Appendix C, First Nations Training to Employment Program: Proposal Submission Guidelines for proposal format information.

Duration/Enrollment

First Nations Training to Employment Program is a full-time training initiative (minimum 25 hours per week) with a minimum of 3 weeks to a maximum of 52 weeks in duration.

Partnership

To ensure that an adequate support network for First Nations Training to Employment Program exists, each Partnership must include:

  • A First Nation Band, Tribal Council or Treaty Organization although multiple representation is encouraged (i.e. AHRDA holder), and
  • Industry (e.g. employer, industry association, or union), and
  • Alberta Employment, Immigration and Industry.

Other provincial departments, the federal government and/or community partners are encouraged to participate as deemed necessary.

Requirements of Partners

First Nations partners will:

  • Identify the training opportunity, and
  • Lead the program project proposal process, and
  • Initiate communication with other partners, and
  • Be a potential funding agent, and
  • Establish a steering committee (a steering committee must be established to oversee the planning, delivery, evaluation and reporting requirements of the project), and
  • Ensure all clients receive proper support during training (e.g. living allowances, transportation, childcare, work clothes, equipment, and other community supports (e.g. addictions counselling, and Elder support). Ensure community support exists and is sustained during the project period, and
  • Designate an individual to act as project coordinator who will:
  • Monitor client(s) progress and attendance, and
  • Serve as a liaison between government and other partners, and
  • Assist in the training and employment support needs of the project participants

Employer/Union and Industry partners will:

  • Identify employment opportunities, and
  • Identify the skills needed to succeed in the specified occupation, and
  • Identify pre-requisites and work requirements, and
  • Be a potential funding agent, and
  • Validate the employment opportunity with a letter of intent, and
  • Provide quality and realistic work experience and be prepared to offer employment to project graduates

Alberta Employment, Immigration and Industry as a partner will:

  • Provide leadership and support to the program as needed, and
  • Become a potential funding agent; and
  • Be responsible to provide access to the AEII’s client tracking system, training and ensure client data is entered for tracking purposes.

PROCEDURE

Delivery Method

First Nations Training to Employment Program is delivered through contract-based delivery (i.e. third-party contract). The contract is signed with the First Nation Band, Treaty Council or Tribal Organization and based upon a proposal developed by the First Nations Training to Employment Program partnership.

The program may involve a four-step process:

  • Development of a First Nations Training to Employment Program partnership, and
  • Development of a First Nations Training to Employment Program project proposal by the partnership (identifies the project purpose, design and how it will be delivered), and
  • Contract with a First Nations Band, contract holder or training provider; and
  • Evaluation

The First Nations Training to Employment Program partnership must create a steering committee to oversee the program aspects of the project and may designate a project coordinator to oversee the day-to-day operations of the project.

Program Access/Entrance

Clients may self-refer or are referred by a First Nations Band, contract holder or training provider to access the First Nations Training to Employment Program. A First Nations Training to Employment Program partnership can establish a selection committee to develop the steps in the client application, client assessment, client training plans and selection process.

Program Exit

The First Nations Training to Employment Program concludes upon completion of all the requirements of the training program. If the client is having difficulty completing the program, the designated project coordinator will assess the situation and change will be recommended for successful completion of the training program.

Client(s) who withdraw from the training program early may require further assessment and will be referred back to their Band, contract holder or training provider for follow up. Clients will be monitored for attendance and progress.

The Appeal Process

If a client wishes to appeal a decision with respect to the training program, then the appeal must be made to the selection committee to determine further action.



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