DURHAM — Ontario has unveiled a new apprenticeship and skilled trades system which it says will help employers find the workers they need in order to meet the demands of the economy.
“Technology is changing Ontario’s economy and the skilled trades have to keep up,” said Premier Doug Ford at an announcement held at Ontario Power Generation’s Darlington Energy Complex . “We know we have talented potential workers in Ontario — providing the right training will make it easier to match talent with good jobs, help us grow the auto and manufacturing sector, and make Ontario open for business.”
The province is introducing portable skill sets to help speed up certification and training in the skilled trades, without compromising health and safety, it says. Portable skill sets are a new competency-based system to provide workers and employers with more flexibility. Currently, Ontario’s tradespeople are required to master the full scope of a trade to complete an apprenticeship and obtain certification.
“We are listening to industry and tradespeople, and we know we need to get workers interested, trained and working faster,” said Dr. Merrilee Fullerton, Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities, at the announcement. “Portable skill sets will help us deliver on our promise to modernize the skilled trades and apprenticeship system, match people and training with good quality jobs, and grow our economy.”
Portable skill sets also offer cross-skilling through the trades by letting apprentices, skilled tradespeople and employers choose skills that they need for the jobs that are available today. With the new portable skill sets system, training, retraining and certifying workers in the specific skills needed for these opportunities will be more efficient than ever before, believes the province.
“Our government is introducing portable skill sets so workers can upgrade their training faster than ever before and be ready for new opportunities,” said Ford. “It’s another way we’re providing the tools to make Ontario open for business and open for jobs.”