CBTU Applauds Trudeau Government for Focusing on Construction Trades

28 Feb, 2018

OTTAWA, Feb. 28, 2018 /CNW/ – The Canadian Building Trades Union applauds the Trudeau Government’s third budget as it supports many important initiatives with the construction trade sector.

“When the Finance Minister began his speech by talking about Joan the Plumber and her path towards entering that trade, I knew that the government has been listening to us,” said Robert Blakely, Canadian Operating Officer for the Canadian Building Trades Union.

The Finance Minister wants to encourage women to pursue careers in male-dominated Red Seal trades, and to ensure that women are increasingly able to model leadership to other aspiring female tradespeople. Therefore, the Federal Government is allocating $19.9 million over five years to pilot an Apprenticeship Incentive Grant for Women.  Under the Grant, women would receive $3,000 for each of their first two years of training.  Along with the existing Apprenticeship Completion Grant of $2,000, women are now eligible to receive up to $8,000 in grants.

The Government of Canada is also proposing to introduce a new Pre-Apprenticeship Program.  This program will encourage underrepresented groups – including but not limited to women, Indigenous Peoples, newcomers and persons with disabilities – to explore careers in the skilled trades.  The Government is investing $46 million over five years for the Pre-Apprenticeship Program.

“The CBTU recognizes that the industry needs to recruit and train new workers and that is why we prioritize on our Build Together Workforce Development initiative within our organization, where we focus on underrepresented groups of the population,” said Blakely.  “Therefore, the initiative that the Government announced is a mirror of what the CBTU is currently doing and that makes for a great partnership opportunity,” continued Blakely.

The Trudeau Government has announced other budget initiatives that are of high interest to the Canadian Building Trades Union, such as:

  • The launching of the Women in Construction Fund, a $10 million investment over three years; and
  • A new Union Training and Innovation program;

“The Government of Canada has recognized the importance in investing in people and their budget reflects it,” said Robert Kucheran, Chairman of the Canadian Executive Board of CBTU and General Vice President of the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades.  “I look forward in continuing the conversation with the various Ministers on these new initiatives.  The Canadian Building Trades Union will work with the Trudeau Government in achieving success on these priorities,” concluded Kucheran.

About CBTU
The North America-wide Building Trades coordinates activities and provides resources to 15 affiliated trade unions in the construction, maintenance and fabrication industries. In Canada, CBTU represents 500,000 skilled trades workers.

SOURCE Building & Construction Trades Department, AFL-CIO