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Province of British Columbia
For Immediate Release
April 10, 2015
Ministry of Social Development and Social Innovation
Chilliwack jobs training program gives trainees a lift

CHILLIWACK – Future heavy industrial manufacturing workers will soon be hard at work in the classroom and on the jobsite, thanks to a new employment training program at Chilliwack`s Mussell Crane Manufacturing.

The project is supported by more than $360,000 in provincial funding. As part of government`s Community and Employer Partnership program, up to 36 participants will gain theoretical and on-the-job experience in heavy industrial manufacturing and operations before the project ends in March 2016.

Trainees will receive 10 weeks of employability and occupational skills training at the University of the Fraser Valley, four weeks of on-the-job work experience at local employers and two weeks followup support to prepare for jobs as heavy industrial manufacturing and operations workers. The first of three 16-week training sessions is already full.

Project-Based Labour Market Training helps groups of people with on- or off-the-job employment training and is a component of Community and Employer Partnerships, which were introduced in April 2012 as part of the Employment Program of BC.

To date, nearly 560 job seekers have benefited from work experience and nearly 140 projects have been funded throughout the province.

By 2022, B.C. is expecting one million job openings with more than two-thirds driven by retirements in an aging population. Government created the BC Skills for Jobs Blueprint to ensure more British Columbians have the skills they need to be first in line for in-demand jobs in B.C.'s diverse, strong and growing economy.

The Community and Employer Partnerships program is featured in B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint and provides more support to people who are struggling to gain a foothold in the job market. It will help to build stronger partnerships with industry and labour to connect British Columbians with classroom and on-the-job training, while making it easier for employers to hire the skilled workers they need – when and where they need them.


Michelle Stilwell, Minister of Social Development and Social Innovation  −

“With the combination of classroom instruction in ‘Trades 101’ and on-the-job experience, participants will graduate with the skills they need to start rewarding trades careers. The heavy industrial manufacturing sector has many in-demand jobs and projects like this make it easier for employers to hire the skilled workers they need.”

John Martin, MLA for Chilliwack −

“This partnership is a prime example of how local businesses, government, and educational institutions can work together to train more skilled workers and prepare them for the increasing job opportunities in the trades. I am so pleased to be a part of a government that continues to invest in job creation and skills training here in Chilliwack and around the province.”

Fred Mussell, president, Mussell Crane Manufacturing  −

“It's OK to not know, but it's not OK to not try. This training program will help participants gain the knowledge and skills required to enter the manufacturing workforce with confidence. Having the support of a program like this behind them will encourage and promote the development of independence and discipline, and contribute to a strong foundation for sustainable employment.”

Rolf Arnold, director, Trades and Technology Centre, University of the Fraser Valley  −

“The University of the Fraser Valley strives to support the economic development of the communities it serves and recognizes industrial manufacturing comprises a substantial industry in our region. The opportunity to partner with Mussell Crane is a chance to support the people in our communities who could benefit from training in industrial manufacturing for good jobs in the manufacturing industry and at the same time assist in developing a workforce for that sector. The university has a longstanding working relationship with Mussell Crane and are confident in their sincere commitment to the students in this program and the manufacturing industry.”

Quick Facts:

  • In 2015-16, the ministry has committed to investing $331 million in employment and labour market programs under the Employment Program of BC.
  • The Employment Program of BC is funded by the Province of British Columbia as well as the Government of Canada through the Labour Market Development Agreement.
  • Funding supports 84 WorkBC Employment Services Centres throughout the province and the four components of the Community and Employer Partnerships fund:
    • Job Creation Partnerships
    • Labour Market Partnerships
    • Project-Based Labour Market Training
    • Research and Innovation

Who is eligible?

  • Businesses
  • Non-Profit Organizations
  • Municipalities, Agencies or Territorial Governments
  • Bands/tribal councils
  • Public Health and Educational Institutions

Learn More:

For more information on Community and Employer Partnerships:

For more information on Mussell Crane Manufacturing:

Find a local WorkBC Employment Services Centre:

Learn more about the Ministry of Social Development and Social Innovation:

For more information on B.C.'s Skills for Jobs Blueprint:

To find out more about the BC Jobs Plan:

Media Contact:
Kelsey Singbeil
Ministry of Social Development
and Social Innovation
250 356-2282

Connect with the Province of B.C. at: