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May 3, 2022
TORONTO, ONTARIO – The Greater Toronto Airports Authority (GTAA) is receiving more than $1.6 million from the Ontario Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development (MLTSD) to create Toronto Pearson’s first ever airport-wide job portal called Pearson Works! Online. The funding comes from the ministry’s Skills Development Fund.
Pearson Works! Online will support the recovery, reskilling and upskilling of the Toronto Pearson workforce, one of the country’s most dynamic, multi-employer workplaces. This portal will connect more than 400 airport employers and the thousands of airport workers with job opportunities, training and supports while helping one of the hardest hit sectors of Ontario’s economy.
Toronto Pearson is the anchor institution at the heart of the Airport Employment Zone, which pre-COVID was Canada’s second largest employment cluster, employing more than 300,000 people.
"Over the past two years, the aviation sector workforce has demonstrated tremendous grit, innovation and resilience in navigating the COVID-19 pandemic. Recognizing the impacts of COVID-19 on the airport, this funding will provide the foundation of our long-term vision for workforce recovery," says Deborah Flint, President and CEO of the GTAA. "This funding will create a work environment that allows employees to build on their dynamic skillset and access available job opportunities across the airport to further the good jobs the airport facilitates. We thank the Government of Ontario for this support."
"Everything our government is doing is to help people in Ontario get bigger paycheques so they can build better lives for themselves and their families," says Monte McNaughton, Ontario’s Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development. "As we rebuild Ontario’s tourism sector, this program will help thousands of workers at Pearson get skills they need to advance their careers and earn more take-home pay."
"This announcement is great news for workers at Pearson and for our community," said Deepak Anand, Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development and MPP for Mississauga-Malton. "Our investment in Pearson Works! Online is part of our government’s plan to ensure all workers have the tools to find meaningful work and create better jobs for everyone in Peel Region."
The Pearson Works! Online platform and its programs will be designed in partnership with members of the airport community, including labour groups such as the Toronto Airport Workers Council (TAWC), who represent airport workers and their largest unions. TAWC’s knowledge of labour issues, mobilization and rapid workforce response will be key to understanding worker needs, designing programming, recruiting and measuring impact.
"When airport employers, workers, and government seek to prepare everyone at Pearson for a strong and safe recovery, beneficial projects such as this one become possible" said Steven Tufts, Spokesperson for TAWC. "TAWC believes that with this support, Pearson Works! Online will assist thousands of present and future airport workers looking to make all airport jobs part of long-lasting and meaningful careers."
To mark the announcement, MPP Anand visited Toronto Pearson to meet with the GTAA’s Chief Human Resources Officer, Mark Carbonelli, as well as airport workers.
About the Greater Toronto Airports Authority
The Greater Toronto Airports Authority is the operator of Toronto – Lester B. Pearson International Airport, Canada’s largest airport and a vital connector of people, businesses and goods. Toronto Pearson has been named “Best Large Airport in North America serving more than 40 million passengers” for five years in a row by Airports Council International (ACI), the global trade representative of the world’s airports. In recognition of its Healthy Airport program, ACI has also awarded Toronto Pearson the “Best hygiene measures in North America” award for two years running, and Toronto Pearson was the first Canadian airport to receive ACI’s global health accreditation for its response to COVID-19.
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