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Growth of Apprenticeship
Technical and vocational education, of which apprenticeship is an integral part, has grown steadily in Canada. In addition to approximately 32,000 apprentices training under Federal-Provincial apprenticeship agreements, there are large numbers training under the Quebec program and in privately operated plans throughout Canada. Since 1960, great expansion has taken place in the form of wellequipped training facilities. The impact of these has been extensive in many areas and they have contributed substantially to the growth of apprenticeship. Skilled Tradesmen Needed in the Construction Industry
There has been a great deal of concern by both government and industry on the lack of skilled tradesmen in the construction industry in Canada. The industry is finding it increasingly difficult to meet its commitments, and it was decided that something must be done immediately to provide more people for the construction labour force between now and 1970.
A committee set up by the National Technical and Vocational Training Council to study manpower needs of industry generally recommended that new subcommittees be appointed for specific industries. The committee for the construction industry was the first subcommittee to be established.
The committee is composed of nine members: two plus the chairman from the Canadian Construction Association, one from the Home Builders Association, two from the Canadian Labour Congress, one from the Confederation of National Trade Unions, one representing the Provincial departments of education, and one representing the Provincial departments of labour.
The committee made several good recommendations and explored ways and means of stepping up and coordinating the efforts of government, employers, and unions.
Recognizing that the need for training in some trades is much greater than in others, the committee recommended that the total number of new entries to apprenticeship should be doubled in 1966 in Canada. There was agreement that full-time preapprentice training was the most effective means of entry to apprenticeship, and it was recommended that more preemployment training be established.
The committee also recommended that, where possible, apprenticeship training should be accelerated, that realistic credits should be offered for prior training and experience, and that basic educational programs be provided for those lacking the formal educational requirements but possessing the aptitude and desire to enter skilled trades.
Perhaps the most effective measure suggested was to have the committee go into an area where there is particular difficulty in finding tradesmen and help local employers and unions to set in motion training programs and to take other necessary steps to meet their needs.
The Sarnia area of Ontario was chosen as the site for the first meeting. Representatives from government, management, and organized labour held a general meeting in Sarnia last January. As a result of this meeting, a working committee was formed to get action on the problems that were identified. In addition to the establishment of courses in a number of occupational areas, joint apprenticeship councils were organized and a construction supervisor's course was initiated. Although the construction industry was first, other industries may be included as their needs become apparent. Shortage of Bricklayers and Stonemasons
The need for training more bricklayers cannot be overemphasized. With the exception of the Province of Quebec, there were only 518 registered bricklaying apprentices in Canada on March 31, 1966. .
To study this problem and discuss possible solutions to existing shortages and to ensure an adequate supply in the future, two member associations of the Canadian Construction Association, the Canadian Structural Clay Association, and the National Concrete Producers Association sponsored a conference in Ottawa in December 1965. Invitations to the conference were issued to officials of governments, both Provincial and Federal, industry and labour. Twenty-three delegates, consisting of masonry contractors, manufacturers, union leaders, Federal and Provincial officials, attended the conference. A "task force” was set up to study the bricklayer and stonemason shortage and to develop a program to ensure an adequate supply of skilled tradesmen in the future.
Information was obtained from government departments, industry, and labour. Some of the major conclusions and recommendations of the task force are discussed below:
a. Graduating Apprentices.—The rate of the present number of graduating bricklaying apprentices is insufficient to meet the masonry industry's anticipated future needs. Every possible effort should be made by management and labour immediately to embark on a concentrated drive to attract more apprentices, particularly in the critical shortage areas of Ontario, and, to some extent, in the Atlantic and Prairie regions.
b. Semiskilled and Unskilled Construction Workers.-On all construction jobs, a certain number of unskilled or semiskilled personnel will be found. Many of these workers would make good trainees for the bricklaying trade if they could be induced to enter into conditions connected with apprenticeship training. In view of these circumstances, it was proposed that Provincial Governments should give immediate consideration to the provision of adequate allowances during the training period to bricklaying apprentices.
c. Publicity. It was urged that a concentrated publicity program be directed at high school dropouts, at rural youth, and at semiskilled construction workers. The publicity should stress the financial advantages and the fact that the trade is becoming a year-round occupation through the adoption of new techniques, the closing in of sites and winter work programs.
d. Courses.-It was recommended that additional full-time courses be established for bricklaying apprentices and evening courses for journeymen in blueprint reading, bonding, materials, welding, etc.
e. Compulsory Certification. In order to improve the quality of workmanship and to give the trade recognized status, it was proposed that compulsory certification be implemented by the Provinces, provided adequate consideration is given to the existing bricklaying labour force.
Training in Cooperation with Industry and Apprenticeship
The urgent need for increasing the number of skilled workers in the maintenance and repair trades in industrial establishments is of vital importance to our economy.
Federal and Provincial Governments are in agreement that we should actively promote and assist training in industry in order to further our manpower development programs beyond those now provided in publicly operated institutions. It is important that any assistance offered to industry should be by way of encouraging industry to undertake greater responsibility, especially with regard to employed persons, and at the same time to promote a broader and longer range approach to training than has been undertaken by industry in the past.
Provision is made in the technical and vocational training agreement and the apprenticeship training agreement for the Federal Government to share in the costs of approved apprenticeship training programs within industry.
The cost of the on-the-job portion of training is not shareable, but the cost of the related classroom or correspondence study is shareable. If the cost of related classroom training is borne by the employer with a financial contribution by the Province to the employer, the Federal Government will reimburse the Province 75 percent of its contribution to industry. If the related classroom instruction is provided by the Province, the Federal contribution is 50 percent.
For an apprenticeship program to be eligible for Federal reimbursement of 75 percent of Provincial expenditure, it must be organized and operated by industry and comply with all Provincial regulations governing apprenticeship, such as registration, length of apprenticeship, course content, examinations, etc. It is anticipated that the inclusion of the 75-percent reimbursement incentive for industrially operated apprenticeship programs will increase substantially the number of skilled workers in the maintenance and repair trades.
Need for Extending Interprovincial Examination Program
In order to develop uniform standards of competence in the various trades throughout Canada, interprovincial standard examinations have been prepared for an increasing number of trades. These examinations have raised the standard of instruction and are becoming an important factor in providing mobility for the skilled labour force.
Up to the present, the interprovincial standard examinations program has been limited to registered apprentices who have satisfactorily completed a period of apprenticeship. However, during the past few years, requests have been made by groups in some of the Provinces to extend the interprovincial examination program to include journeymen who have received their training in a manner other than through a regular Provincial apprenticeship program.
A committee was appointed to develop guidelines and to submit a plan for the extension of the interprovincial examination program at the meeting of the directors of apprenticeship at Winnipeg last May.
The directors of apprenticeship agreed that the interprovincial examination program should be extended to include tradesmen other than those who served in a formal apprenticeship program. It was proposed that the five trades for which the Interprovincial Examinations have been in use for the last 5 years be the first ones to be offered under the extended Interprovincial Examination Program. These trades are: motor vehicle repair (mechanical), plumbing, sheet metal, carpentry, and electrical construction.
It was agreed that the minimum acceptable time in the trade should be at least equivalent to the length of the apprenticeship for the trade, and proof of satisfactory work experience must be supplied by each applicant. It was further agreed that all condidates for the interprovincial certificate would be required to hold valid Provincial tradesmen's qualification certificates for a minimum of 1 year before they would be eligible to write the Interprovincial Examinations.
The program of certification of tradesmen, which did not receive Federal financial assistance under the former apprenticeship training agreement, is included in the new agreement. Federal assistance to the Provinces under the apprenticeship training agreement is 50 percent of the approved costs. As a result of Federal financial assistance and the extended use of Interprovincial Examinations, it is expected that there will be a tremendous expansion in tradesmen's qualification programs in Canada in the future.
R. E. ANDERSON, Nova Scotia, Chairman.
BILL LANEY, Arkansas [Adopted.]
President CATHERWOOD. Thank you, Ray, for a very excellent presentation of a well-prepared and articulated report.
Do any of you wish to discuss any features of the report!
DISCUSSION Commissioner OTERO. I would like to ask one question at this time. I wonder, Mr. Chairman, if one of the members of the committee has any recommendation as to what approach or guidance we should use in trying to set up our preapprenticeship program?
President CATHERWOOD. You are referring to preapprenticeship programs possibly in connection with, but not necessarily limited to, what is available in the States in connection with manpower development and training?
Commissioner OTERO. This would be all part of the answer.
President CATHERWOOD. Do you or a member of your committee have any suggested responses, Ray?
Mr. ANDERSON. I might say, Mr. Chairman, in Nova Scotia and all Provinces, I believe, in Canada, with possibly the exception of the Province of Quebec, there are advisory committees established to advise the Minister as to what training should be done. They examine the statistical information prepared by the Statistical and Research Department of the Department of Labour. We examine the census data. This information is put before the Provincial