In the fight to attract new skilled trades workers to Canadian industry, the Ontario government has announced the launch of a new travelling, skills-focused, career fair geared toward students from Grades 7 to 12.
With its debut event at Mississauga’s International Centre, Ontario’s labour minister is not mincing words, saying “Ontario is facing the largest labour shortage in a generation, which means when you have a job in the skilled trades, you have a job for life.”
The fair is slated to visit cities across Ontario including London, Sudbury, Ottawa and Thunder Bay, where young adults will get hands-on exposure to all 144 recognized skilled trades and presentations from industry professionals and local employers.
Students interested in attending one of the Level Up! fairs are encouraged to reach out to their school’s Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program (OYAP) representative, or a teacher or guidance counsellor for assistance in registering.
POINT OF DIVERGENCE
The office of Ontario’s Auditor General released its 2022 Annual Report on Nov. 30, where more light was shed on the province’s growing disparity between low crash frequency rates and high auto insurance premiums.
Penned by Auditor General Bonnie Lysyk, this year’s report found the average Ontario auto insurance premium rose by 14 percent from 2017 to 2021, totalling an annual rate of about $1,642, despite the fact that the province often records the lowest crash frequency nationally. The report laid out several suggestions for initiatives that could work to make Ontario’s auto insurance industry more efficient, affordable and equitable for the province’s many drivers.
“Like Alberta, Ontario could develop more protocols to treat automobile accident injuries instead of providing cash for those injured to seek their own treatment,” read an excerpt of the report. “Ontario could also follow British Columbia and Saskatchewan in implementing a mandatory licensing or certification regime for automobile repair businesses to protect consumers against poor repairs and fraud.”
Tropicana Employment Services recently hosted its long-anticipated Collision Repair and Auto Body pre-apprenticeship graduation, where the non-profit honoured three classes of now-working apprentices.
The celebration honoured three graduating classes—the classes of 2020 and 2021 had their originally scheduled ceremonies cancelled due to the pandemic—and was held at Centennial College’s event centre.
Tropicana also gave honours to students particularly keen on their studies. The Toyota Canada Scholarship, facilitated through the Black Business and Professional Association (BBPA), went to Chanice Camille Dwyer. Through this two-year scholarship, Dwyer can access funds to further their education and training toward obtaining a Red Seal Ontario Apprenticeship in the trade of Auto Body and Collision Damage Repairer 310B Apprenticeship.
Graduates Medhi Tirafkan, Justice Kirby-Black, Tariji Herd and Tre Matosas-Adderley all took home $500, Tropicana Community Services Bursary awards, which will go toward their Level 2 administrative fees if they continue their career path in collision repair.