Plans to harmonize apprenticeship programs across Atlantic Canada were recently announced by the Council of Atlantic Premiers in collaboration with Jason Kenney, minister of employment and social development.
The project will harmonize training, certification and standards, the council announced in a statement. Harmonizing programs across the Atlantic region is expected to increase the availability of training across Atlantic Canada and lead to higher apprenticeship completion rates and increased labour mobility.
“Harmonization of Atlantic Canada’s apprenticeship programs will improve the opportunity for workers to access the training they need to advance their careers and will create a stronger labour market in Atlantic Canada,” said Stephen McNeil, premier of Nova Scotia and the chair of the Council of Atlantic Premiers. “This is part of our comprehensive approach to making sure we have the skilled work force needed to meet the demand for existing projects and to attract new employers to the region.”
There are currently 13 different apprenticeship systems across Canada and each involves different requirements for training, certification and standards. The inconsistencies between systems means apprentices are unable to move between provinces to continue or complete training, making the recruitment of new apprentices from out of province difficult.
The harmonization project will receive more than $4.3 million from the federal government and more than $3.5 million from the governments of the Atlantic provinces. Funds will be focused on 10 trades including construction electricians, bricklayers and control technicians.
“This project will create jobs and opportunities for workers across Atlantic Canada and help employers get the skilled workers they need,” said Kenney.
He called the project “an important step forward in removing the barriers to job creation caused by different apprenticeship systems across the country.”
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