Job grant program change may slice support for people with disabilities: group

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HALIFAX - A Nova Scotia group that helps people with disabilities find and keep jobs says it has laid off support workers because of a funding dispute between Ottawa and the province.

The Collaborative Partnership Network says if it loses its 11 counsellors then the jobs of up to 200 Nova Scotians with disabilities could be at risk.

Janice Ainsworth, co-chairperson of the network, says the program provides vital counselling to both employers and employees that helps keep people with disabilities off welfare.

Ottawa sent an offer last week to the provinces on a funding deal for job training and they have until Friday to accept it.

The provinces have said they want to keep their existing programs under the so-called labour market agreements, while Ottawa has proposed to shift millions of dollars into its employer-directed Canada Job Grant program.

The employees in the nine agencies under the Collaborative Partnership Network rely on an annual budget of $500,000 that came from federal funding for training.

The network is one of a number of groups in the province who say their job training programs are at risk under the federal changes.

Organizations: Collaborative Partnership Network

Geographic location: Ottawa, HALIFAX, Nova Scotia

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