Education Opportunity and Access Fund

The Hospital Employees’ Union has launched a new program with funding from the Ministry of Health – the Education Opportunity and Access Fund (EOAF) – for eligible HEU members in the private sector to cover costs associated with courses and certifications, including FOODSAFE and First Aid/CPR. Online applications open on April 22, 2024.


Registration fees for FOODSAFE Level 1, FOODSAFE Level 1 Refresher, and FOODSAFE Level 2, if:

  • it is a job requirement, or
  • it is a requirement for a health care training program, and 
  • your employer does not pay for it.

Registration fees for Standard First Aid, CPR Level C, and Recertification, if:

  • it is a requirement of your job, or 
  • it is a prerequisite for a health care training program, and 
  • your employer does not pay for it.


First Aid and CPR courses qualify for a training allowance when:

  • they are taken in-person on specific days, and 
  • require you to book time off work. 
  • Casuals are eligible for a training allowance up to a combination of five (5) shifts per work week.
  • Training allowance is not paid when members attend class and work the same day.

FOODSAFE courses are self-directed, online and do not qualify for a training allowance.

Health Career Access Program (HCAP) students are not eligible for EOAF support because they are currently covered by a government HCAP stipend.

If you have already taken a FOODSAFE, First Aid or CPR course – between April 21, 2023 and April 21, 2024 – as part of your job and your employer did not cover the cost, you may apply to the fund for reimbursement, provided you have a payment receipt and proof of course completion.

Ongoing funding will be dispersed until March 31, 2025.

Questions can be directed to


Please submit your confirmation of course registration and payment receipt. If you are requesting a training allowance, please submit documents confirming unpaid leave and the dates you attended training.

You must upload documents as either standard image files (jpeg, jpg, tif, heif, hevc) or PDF.

Members will receive a T4A for all payments of the training allowance. We recommend you seek the advice of a tax professional, if you have questions on how to report the payment on your tax return.

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