Letter from the Assistant Deputy Minister to the EO network: Youth Job Link

February 4, 2016

Dear Employment Ontario Service Provider,

As you may know, the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities is implementing a new, more comprehensive and targeted suite of employment programs and services to more effectively help young people across a broader spectrum of needs improve their skills and find work. This includes Youth Job Connection, Youth Job Link and the existing Employment Service.

The launch of this new continuum of programs for youth is part of the government’s major re-investment of $250 million in the Youth Jobs Strategy, as well as our commitment to modernizing and transforming our employment and training services based on evidence of what works. This will improve access and provide job seekers and employers with proven, coordinated and targeted services that meet their needs.

Last October, we successfully launched Youth Job Connection (YJC), which offers more intensive supports to help youth experiencing multiple and/or complex barriers to employment build better futures.

I’m now pleased to share more information about the upcoming launch of Youth Job Link (YJL) in spring 2016. This program is designed to help youth, including students, aged 15 to 29, who do not face significant barriers to employment, but who could benefit from some extra help to plan their careers and transition to the labour market. YJL will be integrated into the Resource and Information component of the Employment Service (ES), but will feature expanded, youth-focused offerings.

The program will offer three categories of service, each of which will be available year-round. They are:

  • Career exploration services to increase knowledge of career options and support career decision-making;
  • Career management services to improve readiness for the labour market; and,
  • Job search, readiness and matching assistance to connect youth with employers offering employment opportunities, including summer jobs. 

While these services will be offered year-round, the majority of youth are expected to use them to help find summer employment.

In some cases, YJL will also offer individual supports and employer incentives to offset the costs of on-the-job-training, new employee orientation and other hiring-related costs, for those youth that need more assistance finding work.

All ES providers, at over 320 locations across the province, are being offered the opportunity to deliver the program.

Next steps:

ES providers are being contacted today with further information about next steps to respond to the ministry’s offer to deliver the program and prepare for a successful launch.

Additional program details and informational supports are now available on the Employment Ontario Partners’ Gateway (EOPG). These include Qs and As, ES program guidelines addendum, and a memo template to help you communicate with employers about employer supports.

As you may be aware, the ministry is also preparing to launch Youth Job Connection: Summer (YJCS) this spring, which will provide summer, part-time and after-school job opportunities to high school students aged 15 to 18 who are facing challenging life circumstances and may need support transitioning between school and work.

Together, this new suite of programs represents a new generation of better coordinated, high quality, targeted employment and training services to help youth improve their skills, find work and succeed.

More information about YJCS is posted on the YJC page on the EOPG. As always, we will continue to update you as more information on YJCS becomes available.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you, once again, for your continued commitment to delivering high-quality service to our clients, and for your partnership and support as we implement this exciting new suite of services to better help all youth get the training and supports they need to build meaningful careers.

Please do not hesitate to contact your local ministry office if you have any questions or concerns.


Original signed by

David Fulford
Assistant Deputy Minister
Employment and Training Division