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An Employment Manitoba program called Manitoba Works has allowed the Winkler Heritage Society to open its museum at the Southland Mall an additional thirty hours per week. Tuesday morning Joanne Bergen was unveiled as the new receptionist for the Society's museum, with a portion of her salary being covered by the provincial program.
Manitoba Works provides wage subsidies to employers to provide on the job training that provides a direct work experience and develops job-specific skills that can lead to ongoing, full-time employment. The employer must provide a minimum of 30 hours per week of employment, with a guarantee that no current employees are displaced by the new employee. Municipalities and non-profit employers are eligible for a full minimum wage subsidy for up to one year. The goal of Manitoba Works is permanent workwith the subsidized employer. The subsidy does not have to be repaid.
"We've always been aiming for opening up our Museum for more hours than what we have now, just on weekends. We are paying a high rent, we think, and to make that count we would like to make it available to the public as much as we can. This has afforded us a good opportunity to do that," said Society Chairperson Jerry Hildebrand.
Hildebrand notes the final decision whether to hire this person or not is made was made by the Society. He stated when Joanne came to them she was more than qualified for the position.
Bergen will officially come on board June 3rd. She will be working Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m.
The Society has been told a number of times that people have tried to come see the Museum, but it was closed. With the addition of Bergen it will give people who wish to come see the Museum more opportunities to see the pieces of Winkler's heritage.
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