$3m grant to train lower-skilled and older aviation workers

A $3 million grant has been launched to fund training programmes for lower-skilled and older workers in the aviation sector.

Announcing this yesterday, the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) and the National Trades Union Congress (NTUC) said 3,000 workers - including cleaners, trolley service officers, landscape officers, taxi coordinators and freight forwarders - are expected to benefit from it.

The Singapore OneAviation Reskilling (Soar) grant will be drawn from the Aviation Resilience Package, which was announced last December to cushion the blow of the Covid-19 pandemic on firms in the sector.

It will fund training to upskill lower-skilled air transport workers, help extend the careers of older workers and support career progression and talent retention.

The grant will also fund air transport-related training courses initiated by workers or collectively through their unions via their company training committees (CTC).

NTUC will work with established aviation firms like Singapore Airlines to provide in-house training. Unions will collaborate with companies via CTCs to identify potential new job roles or opportunities.

Companies will be reimbursed up to $100 per day of training per participant upon completion of each course or programme.

NTUC has also committed $1.5 million of the NTUC Education and Training Fund, rolled out in March 2019, to boost the training capacity of unionised companies. Such companies can tap additional funding of up to $50 per worker per day, capped at five days.

CAAS director-general Kevin Shum said: "The Soar grant will support ongoing efforts in preserving core capabilities within the sector. This ensures that Singapore's aviation hub retains a strong pool of talent and expertise to support smooth operations at Changi Airport."

The Soar grant is open to all Singapore citizens and permanent residents in the air transport sector. Those interested can approach their union or human resource representatives for more information.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 23, 2021, with the headline '$3m grant to train lower-skilled and older aviation workers'. Subscribe