OEL Survey: Red Tape Prevents 73% of Ontario Electrical Employers from Hiring New Apprentices


Aug 27, 2018

In a recent survey conducted to over 100 electrical employers, the Ontario Electrical League (OEL), respondents indicate that a growing number of potential apprenticeships are being prevented due to ratio restrictions.

“Entering the electrical trades in Ontario is increasingly difficult because of the apprentice to journeyperson ratio cap, which puts the education and development of the next generation of electricians at risk,” says Stephen Sell, OEL President in a recent media release published by OEL.

“Many Ontarians trying to enter the industry are turned away because contractors have already filled the maximum amount of apprentice positions they can legally have. As an association that represents the electrical industry, the OEL is working to change this regulation for the betterment of the economy and our industry.”

Of the 127 responses from electrical contractors, 73% indicated they would hire more apprentices. The top response to the question indicated that employers would hire two additional apprentices. The data show a total count of 307 additional electrical apprentices that could potentially enter the workforce, a figure that is based on the OEL’s research alone.

When it comes to ratio restrictions, the electrical trade is the most complex among all trade in the province. The OEL is working to change apprenticeship ratios 1 to 1, as the current ratio structure is as follows below:

The number of apprentices who may be sponsored or employed by a person in the trade of electrician — construction and maintenance in relation to the number of journeypersons employed by the person in the trade shall not exceed

(a) for the first journeyperson, one apprentice
(b) for the second journeyperson, an additional apprentice
(c) for the third journeyperson, an additional apprentice
(d) for the fourth journeyperson, an additional apprentice
(e) for the next three additional journeypersons, an additional apprentice
(f) for the next six additional journeypersons, an additional apprentice
(g) for every three additional journeypersons thereafter, an additional apprentice

The Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities (MTCU) is the governing body for the administration of laws relating to post-secondary education and skills training, and is directly responsible for imposing ratio restrictions, which are reviewed every four years. As the MTCU’s next revision is scheduled for April 2019, the OEL encourages industry stakeholders across the province to lobby for better and fair regulation.

Read OEL coverage of survey results: www.oel.org/news/details/red-tape-prevents-73-of-ontario-electrical-employers-from-hiring-new-apprentices

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