BC Construction Labour Industry Calls for 25% Apprentice Quota

BC Construction Labour Industry Calls for 25% Apprentice Quota

 

May 14, 2017

Construction labour representatives in B.C. are looking for the provincial government to set a firm quota, reports Jean Sorensen in the Journal of Commerce.

The labour reps have requested that 25% of those employed on new government projects be apprentices, a figure first suggested by the BC government. Irene Lanzinger, President of the BC Federation of Labour, would like the private sector to step up as well. If the private construction sector is not fully engaged, she says, employers working on those sites will be poaching skilled labour in the future.

A BC government press release states, “Much of the driving force to increase opportunities for apprenticeship sponsorship comes from recommendations made in two reports: the McDonald ITA Report and the premier’s Liquefied Natural Gas Working Group, which aspires to a goal of having 25% of overall workforce on LNG-related construction projects to be apprentice-able trades.”

Sorensen’s article notes that BC Construction Association President Chris Atchison is not sure about setting a quota. Such a quota may be difficult to meet in the event of looming skills shortages and affect a company when bidding on a contract, he maintains.

“I think if we put a fixed number on it then it becomes an expectation that you have to meet and if the labour is not there to meet it, you could be in a bit of a corner,” Atchison is quoted as saying.

Read the full article: http://journalofcommerce.com/Labour/News/2017/5/Construction-labour-industry-wants-25-per-cent-apprentice-quota-1023602W/.

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