VICTORIA — Community Savings Credit Union has expressed its support for B.C.’s return to compulsory trades.
The credit union called the announcement on the skilled trades certification system as a positive and proactive step to help attract more people to trades careers, formally recognize the skills of current and future trades workers and create more opportunities for women and Indigenous people.
“British Columbia’s construction industry accounts for nine per cent of the province’s GDP and employs over a quarter of a million workers: it is crucial to the B.C. economy,” wrote the credit union in a press release. “Yet the sector is facing an impending skills shortage, which could significantly impact its ability to meet the province’s long-term construction needs. Only 12 per cent of the construction workforce is under the age of 25, while women remain hugely underemployed in the industry.”
The credit union added bringing back the certification system will enable workers to get the training they need for construction careers. It noted the system will complement the province’s Community Benefits Agreement program.
“The long-term aims of the program are to increase access to the construction workforce for women and Indigenous peoples, upskill the existing labour force, increase apprenticeship opportunities and prioritize local hires and jobs, while also providing greater workforce stability,” stated the credit union.