Gitxsan Development Corporation president Rick Connors (left) and Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation Minister John Rustad in Hazelton Wednesday.

Gitxsan receive $800,000 for LNG skills training

Aboriginal Affairs and Reconciliation Minister John Rustad announced funding for Gitxsan skills training at a meeting in Hazelton Wednesday.

Aboriginal Affairs and Reconciliation Minister John Rustad today announced $800,000 for skills training to prepare the Gitxsan First Nation for LNG industry jobs.

Hereditary chiefs gathered at the Gitxsan Development Corporation (GDC) building Wednesday morning to hear about the training, which will include courses in camp services, security, construction skills, driver training and occupational first aid.

According to the Minister, it is the biggest share of the B.C. government’s $30 million aboriginal skills training fund given to a First Nation to date.

He said the LNG industry would improve the quality of life for families in the Northwest.

“The good-paying jobs and the shared prosperity that LNG development is bringing to B.C. represent a tremendous opportunity for all of us,” he said.

“It will create thousands of new jobs and become a powerful driver for a growing economy and greater prosperity.”

Although none of the existing pipeline proposals have received final investment decisions, Rustad said the B.C. government was giving First Nations like the Gitxsan a head start by investing in skills training now.

“We thought if we wait for final investment decisions the jobs would be created before we could actually get the training done, so what we wanted to do was to make sure that First Nations have an opportunity to be able to take advantage of them as the opportunities come along,” he said.

There will 168 places for unemployed and underemployed Gitxsan members to participate in the training, which will be delivered in the Hazelton area by the GDC and the Northwest Community College.

Gitxsan Development Corporation president Rick Connors said his organization had provided input on the types of courses being offered.

“We’ve been able to be involved in this entire process which was phenomenal from our perspective, because the last thing we needed with a project like natural gas coming into place was to be dictated which training is going to be provided,” he said.

“Then we’ve got a bunch of people with certificates that wouldn’t even be applicable.”

The training is expected to start mid-2016.

Minister Rustad also announced $68,000 for a domestic violence program for men.

More to come in the Dec. 16 edition of The Interior News.





Just Posted

New SD54 chair to deal with potential Houston school closure

The baton has been passed at Bulkley Valley School District 54. After… Continue reading

Smithers Gallery Association cancels Divas Friends Variety Show

The gallery says they can’t find anyone to book artists. Also, a look at arts 2018 funding requests.

VIDEOS and PHOTOS: 20th anniversary of the Delgamuukw/Gisday’wa court decision celebrated

Chiefs and elders from different houses spoke at the feast discussing their memories of the case.

No charges against Smithers RCMP officer for in-custody death

The Independent Investigations Office conducted an investigation into the actions of the officer.

VIDEO: Researchers rely on drones to survey aftermath of B.C. wildfires

UBC researchers are using aerial drones to study the historic 2017 wildfires in the province

REPLAY: B.C. this week in video

In case you missed it, here’s a look at replay-worthy highlights from across the province this week

B.C. wildfire evacuee admits to setting hotel room fire

A Williams Lake wildfire evacuee admitted to setting Kamloops hotel room on fire

Grizzly bear trophy hunting over in B.C.

NDP government says 2017 hunt was the last one

UPDATE: Grizzly bear trophy hunting over in B.C.

Now only Indigenous people can hunt bears for meat

Star Blue Jays announced for Vancouver ‘Winter Tour’ event in January

Toronto’s pro baseball team heads west for two-day event

UPDATE: ‘Multiple fatalities’ as Amtrak derails in Washington State

13 cars jumped the tracks as train made its first voyage between Seattle and Portland

Mental effects of wildfire still linger in Fort McMurray

‘Resilient, but tired:’ Mental effects of wildfire lingering in Fort McMurray

Climate change hits Winter Olympic preparation

AP Exclusive: Climate change hits Winter Olympic preparation

Calgary Flames thump Vancouver Canucks 6-1

Mark Giordano, Sam Bennett lead the way as Flames thump Canucks 6-1

Most Read