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Shortage of Skilled Workers Opens Doors to Meaningful Apprenticeships

IUPAT - Painters Union

Shortage of Skilled Workers Opens Doors to Meaningful Apprenticeships

The path to success often begins with opportunity meeting preparation. For Canadians seeking careers in skilled trades as commercial painters, drywall finishers, or glaziers, opportunity is most certainly knocking.

According to recent reports, Canada has a labour shortage on its hands. One such report, ManpowerGroup 2018 Talent Shortage Survey, shows that 41 per cent of Canadian employers are having difficulty finding the necessary talent. Most of the vacancies are for skilled trades. And it’s not getting any easier, with employers noting that it is getting harder, year after year, to find skilled workers.

Perhaps not surprisingly, many job applicants don’t have the required training for the positions that are available. Almost a quarter of employers in the country say applicants don’t have the needed training, skills, or attitude for the work that’s open. The labour shortage is being described as the ‘new normal.’

According to research from the Canadian Federation of Independent Business, as of last summer, there were more than 400,000 job vacancies across the country. Luckily, the answer is at hand if people seeking good-paying jobs want it: apprenticeships.

In Ontario, there is a clear path to apprenticeships and meaningful work. The government’s Apprenticeship in Ontario website lays out the five steps on that journey:

  1. Find a sponsor who will agree to take you on. If you can’t find a sponsor, contact Employment Ontario for assistance.
  2. Apply for an apprenticeship.
  3. The application will be reviewed and the sponsor will be notified if it is approved.
  4. When approved, a training agreement will be created for the sponsor to sign. The ministry will approve the signed agreement and register your apprenticeship training.
  5. Within 90 days of the ministry registering the training agreement, register with the Ontario College of Trades, and apply for membership.


Skilled Workers Can Expect to be in Demand for Some Time

Many aspiring skilled workers (commercial painters, glaziers, drywall finishers, etc) are taking advantage of the opportunity. There were 25,000 employer sponsors in 2016-2017, and 70 in-class training sites in Ontario. One-in-five new jobs between 2017-2021 will be trades-related.

Essentially, an apprenticeship is a process that allows you to get paid while being trained for the skill. They are good for the worker, who gets training into a viable trade, and the employer who is able to fill vacancies with qualified talent. Doors open from there. A skilled tradesperson with an entrepreneurial flare can soon find themselves operating a business, employing other workers.

The International Union of Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT) represents a number of trades, such as painters, drywall finishers, glaziers, stucco workers, and more in Toronto. The union partners with employers and government to offer training at four locations across Ontario. The Finishing Trades Institute of Ontario (FTI Ontario) locations are located in Toronto (130 Toro Road, Unit C), Hamilton (1430 Osprey Drive), and Nepean (199 Colonnade Road, South, Unit 4). The Interior Finishing Systems Training Centre (IFSTC) is located in Woodbridge (60 Sharer Road).

For more information on our services and the road to an apprenticeship, click here.

Contact us for more information today, and a union representative will get back to you shortly.