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Ontario launching “all-new” Tools Grant program; forgiving loans

May 22, 2020 | By Anthony Capkun

Ontario Premier Doug Ford (May 22, 2020). Courtesy Government of Ontario.

May 22, 2020 – “As more construction gets going, we’re making sure our skilled tradespeople are set up for success,” said Ontario’s Premier Doug Ford as his government unveiled an “all-new” Ontario Tools Grant program.

The government is providing an Ontario Tools Grant of $2.5 million in 2020-21, and $7.5 million in 2021-22 and ongoing. This will help new eligible apprentices purchase the equipment they need to start their careers, says the government. The funding amounts will be distributed as follows:

• $1000 for those in motive power sector trades
• $600 for those in construction and industrial sector trades
• $400 for those in service sector trades


To be eligible for the new grant, apprentices must have:

• completed level 1 training on or after April 1, 2020;
• an active registered training agreement; and
• been registered as an apprentice for at least 12 months.

The government is also forgiving more than $10 million in outstanding loans owed by apprentices for tool purchases made at the beginning of their careers. The Loans for Tools Program allowed new apprentices to buy tools, equipment, clothing, manuals and code books required for their trade. About 19,000 apprentices who participated in the program owed, on average, $495.

“By investing in our people, we’re building a strong foundation for Ontario’s long-term economic recovery,” Ford said.

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