Survey on Indigenous workforce in N.S. and P.E.I. wraps this spring
Survey asks respondents for education and skill levels
A survey on the Indigenous workforce in Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island is wrapping up this spring.
The Atlantic Policy Congress of First Nations Chiefs is asking people in those two provinces about their education and skill levels, as well as their current employment and long-term career goals.
The information will connect workers with improved job prospects and will boost economic development in the region, said John Paul, executive director of the congress.
"The better data we have and the more collaborative use and sharing of the information will go a lot better to support our people both on and off our communities," he said.
The Mi'kmaw Economic Benefits Office in Membertou already has its own data on First Nations communities in Cape Breton, said Alex Paul, executive director of the benefits office, and it is forging ahead with its own plans.
"This survey could certainly provide us with a picture of what it looks like across the entire region," he said.
"But I think … by the time they're getting their results, we're going to have a fair bit of information ourselves and be acting on that by putting strategies and plans in place in order to address those, where those needs are," he said.
'Swimming in the same direction'
Alex Paul said the economic benefits office has successfully built a workforce in skilled trades. The next step is focusing on training Indigenous workers in science, technology, education and math.
John Paul said the regional labour survey will be useful in promoting collaboration and spreading the benefits. "It's trying to get everybody swimming in the same direction to meet the needs of our communities," he said.
The results will be made public and that will help employers, as well, said John Paul.
Printed copies of the Indigenous labour market survey can be filled out at the Membertou band office. The survey can also be completed online until the end of March.