Government of Canada investing in teaching digital skills to Canadians who need them most
Canadians needing fundamental digital skills training to benefit from this investment
May 21, 2019 – Kamloops, British Columbia
Digital skills widen Canadians’ access to a world of possibilities. All Canadians should have the necessary skills to get online by using computers, mobile devices and the Internet safely and effectively. That is why the Government is putting in place initiatives to ensure no one is left behind as the world transitions to a digital economy.
Today, the Honourable Joyce Murray, President of the Treasury Board and Minister of Digital Government, on behalf of the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, announced an investment of $1.3 million in the Canadian National Institute for the Blind’s (CNIB) Connecting with Technology initiative. This initiative will deliver fundamental digital literacy skills training to participants in British Columbia and across the country.
CNIB’s Connecting with Technology initiative will be targeted at seniors who are blind or partially sighted. This initiative will reach about 750 participants, providing them with training in digital literacy and offering required assistive technologies.
This investment is being provided through the Digital Literacy Exchange program, a $29.5-million program that supports digital skills training for those known to be most at risk of being left behind by the rapid pace of digital technology adoption: seniors, people with disabilities, newcomers to Canada, Indigenous peoples, low-income Canadians, and individuals living in northern and rural communities.
The program aligns with the Government’s Innovation and Skills Plan, a multi-year strategy to create good jobs and ensure Canadians have the skills to succeed.
“Canada’s digital revolution must be for everyone—not just for young people and people who live in large cities. Through the Digital Literacy Exchange program, our government is helping organizations like the Canadian National Institute for the Blind deliver digital literacy training to those who need it most.”
– The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development
“Digital skills are becoming more important every day, whether for booking a medical appointment, banking safely, studying or looking for a job. That’s why, through the Digital Literacy Exchange program, our government is supporting the Canadian National Institute for the Blind in providing individuals who are visually impaired with the accessible digital skills training they need.”
– The Honourable Joyce Murray, President of the Treasury Board and Minister of Digital Government
“CNIB's Connecting with Technology initiative, which has recently been awarded funding through the federal government’s Digital Literacy Exchange Program, will provide learning opportunities to individuals with vision loss in British Columbia, Manitoba and Nova Scotia. The funding will enable us to increase information and develop knowledge in the world of digital literacy within our community.”
– Jennifer Yankanna, Executive Director, CNIB Foundation British Columbia/Yukon
The Digital Literacy Exchange program is designed to be inclusive by reaching out to those who are not online or are still learning how to use digital technologies. This includes seniors, people with disabilities, newcomers to Canada, low-income Canadians, members of language minority groups, Indigenous peoples, individuals who have not completed high school, and people living in northern and rural communities.
With this initiative, CNIB will provide digital literacy skills training, through fully accessible sessions equipped with the required assistive technologies, for individuals who are blind or partially sighted.
Project funding is available from 2018–19 to 2021–22.
Office of the Honourable Joyce Murray
President of the Treasury Board and Minister of Digital Government
Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada
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