The Youth Skills BC Workplace Pilot Program is a new incentive program which offers BC employers up to $2,000, when hiring an eligible youth between the ages of 15 and 29.
The program, which runs from January 1, 2011 and March 31, 2012, also offers an additional incentive of $1,000 to purchase training for their new employee.
Funded through Canada – British Columbia Labour Market Agreement (LMA), the program has been created to provide BC's youth with the skills required to be successful in the employment market. Through a combination of training, work experience and formal skills development training, the program hopes to address the current and future skills shortage in BC.
So how can you, as a small business owner, take advantage of this program and what are the parameters?
To be eligible for the Youth Skills BC Workplace Pilot Program your business must be:
- In operation for a minimum of one year
- In good standing with WorkSafe BC
- Be suitable for public funding (not engaged in any illegal, discriminatory or offensive business activity)
Youths employed under the program must:
- Be aged between 15 and 29
- Be unemployed
- Not be an Employment Insurance (EI) client
- Be legally entitled to work in Canada
- Be a resident of British Columbia
- Not be a full time student or enrolled in a high school
- Not be participating in another LMA funded program
There are two different types of funding – the Hiring Incentive and the Supplementary Training Incentive.
1) Hiring Incentive
You can receive up to $2,000 per participant in the scheme. Each participant must be employed for a minimum of three months and for a minimum of 30 hours per week (unless the participant is a person with a disability and the disability precludes the ability to work 30 hours or more per week).
You are able to employ up to 3 participants over the term of the program, however you must not use these participants to fill positions in dispute or to replace existing employees.
There is no stipulation on how the $2,000 must be spent in your business and by obtaining the hiring incentive; this does not preclude you from applying for the training portion of the program as well.
2) Supplementary Training
By supplying training either in-house or off-site to participants in the program you can receive an additional incentive of up to $1,000 per participant.
The training you provide for the participant must be relevant to the tasks included in their job role and must provide a certificate or recognized credential. You must ensure that the training is delivered in a formal and structured manner by a professional trainer who is not related to you or your business.
Training costs which you are able to reclaim include:
- Registration fees
- Training services of a recognized training institution
- Related training materials e. g. books and manuals
Training costs which you are not covered for under the program are:
- Clothing, equipment or furnishings
- Travel costs
- Training normally provided by the employer
How to Apply
To apply for funding visit the Bowman Employment Services (BES) website and download the Application for Funding and Training Plan. Once completed, the form can be either submitted via the website or sent to one of the following addresses:
- Mail: Bowman Employment Services Inc, YSBC Program, #307 – 1664 Richter Street, Kelowna, BC V1Y 8N3
- Email: email@example.com
How Quickly Will You Receive an Answer?
You will receive feedback from BES on your application within 2 business days.
After you have employed an eligible employee, payment of the $2,000 will be given in 3 steps over 3 months. The First payment will be at the end of month 1, second at the end of month 2 and the third at the end of month 3, following the completion and receipt of an exit document.
For more information on the program or if you require assistance completing the forms, contact BES at 250-448-4602 or at 1-877-866-3100, Monday to Friday 8 am to 5 pm.