May
5
2020

New initiative connects Islanders with agriculture employment opportunities

Islanders seeking work can now more easily connect with employment opportunities in the agriculture industry through a new labour initiative developed by the Province of Prince Edward Island. 

The COVID-19 Agriculture Labour Support Initiative (ALSI) allows individuals who are interested in working on a farm to register with WorkPEI and be connected with agricultural businesses who have registered their job openings.

“These are certainly tough times for our province, and we are doing as much as we can as a government to support Islanders and industries as we navigate the challenges of COVID-19. It is important that Islanders experiencing lay-offs are provided with opportunities to work and support their families. The agriculture industry also needs workers right now so they can continue to produce food that we all rely on to feed our families. Through this new labour initiative, we have created an avenue for Islanders interested in working in agriculture and farm operations to connect with one another.”

- Agriculture and Land Minister Bloyce Thompson

There is also an extra incentive for students who choose to work in the PEI agriculture industry this summer. Through the Farm Team Program, students returning to post-secondary studies in the fall will receive a $2,000 bursary and students returning to high school will receive a $1,000 bursary. The bursary amounts were doubled over last year to encourage more students work in agriculture. 

These employment initiatives build on provincial supports announced in recent weeks in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, including direct support for the potato industry as well as AgriStability and AgriInsurance programs to support agriculture producers and processors. 

Minister Thompson also recognized the leadership and efforts Island producers and processors who are doing their part to protect the health and well-being Islanders by working with the Chief Public Health Office to put guidelines and measures in place, including personal protective equipment, to protect workers and the agriculture community from COVID-19.     

“People working in agriculture right now are supporting the food system and PEI’s economy; agriculture is an essential service that is vital to the well-being of Islanders and our province,” said Minister Thompson. “Our agriculture community continues to be resilient in the face of a challenging situation. We will continue to do what we can to support them. I welcome the federal government’s aid package announced earlier today that will further help our farmers and processors, and look forward to working with my federal counterpart to get much needed financial support into the hands of our agriculture industry as quickly as possible.” 

To register to be connected through the Agriculture Labour Support Initiative, job seekers and agricultural employers can visit www.workpei.ca/alsi.
For more information on the provincial government’s response to COVID-19, including resources, program applications and important public health information, visit: www.princeedwardisland.ca/COVID19. 


Media Contact:
Ron Ryder    
Senior Communications Officer
Department of Agriculture and Land
902-314-6367
rrryder@gov.pe.ca

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