Displaced Workers – Strategies & Resources

What strategies and resources have been used by Ontario literacy organizations to support displaced workers?

Community Literacy of Ontario (CLO) has recently released a Displaced Workers & Literacy and Basic Skills Programs: Strategies and Resources report. This report is a snapshot of the displaced workers in Ontario who are being served by literacy organizations, with a focus on successful strategies, promising practices and helpful resources. Originally conceived of in 2019, this collection has become even more important and timely as the pandemic has increased major job losses.

Intrigued by the focus of the Displaced Workers Project, Community Literacy of Ontario together with Laubach Literacy Ontario, the College Sector Committee for Adult Upgrading and CESBA conducted research for this report. In October of 2020, a four question survey was sent to literacy educators from across Ontario. Educators from 53 different programs responded.

While the profile of displaced workers is specific to Ontario, many of the strategies and resources for serving displaced workers are useful for any location.


The following strategies were identified:

  • Offer LBS programming of high relevance to displaced workers.
  • Provide digital literacy learning opportunities.
  • Make effective and meaningful referrals.
  • Support displaced workers facing poverty issues.
  • Offer certificates and short courses.
  • Support displaced workers with labour market information and career planning resources.
  • Refer to volunteer placements and experiential learning opportunities.
  • Offer workforce-related curriculum.
  • Promote the skilled trades / apprenticeship as a career choice.
  • Embed resources on the soft skills and confidence building.

Details on what is involved in each strategy are available in the report.


There is an extensive collection of resources, including a mix of more familiar and newer resources. Most of the resources that are shared are available free online.  Some of the resources are specific to Ontario, but similar resources may be found for BC.

A few of the resources are available only in print, but some are available for borrowing from the Decoda library, including:

To borrow any of these print resources or to get help finding other workplace literacy resources, email library@decoda.ca .

Did you know that Community Literacy of Ontario is on the advisory committee of Decoda’s Displaced Workers Project?

Thanks, CLO, for another great resource!

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