Guy Bourgouin MPP for Mushkegowuk—James Bay

Government of Ontario

Statement-Skilled trades and Apprenticeships Strategy

Published on January 15, 2020

Here's my statement relative to Doug Ford's failure to invest in education for the skilled trades

QUEEN’S PARK — Guy Bourgouin MPP (Mushkegowuk—James Bay), the Official Opposition NDP’s critic for Training, Trades and Apprenticeships, has issued a statement regarding Minister McNaughton’s remarks today on skilled trades and apprenticeships:

“We need to expand opportunities for a new generation of young people in Ontario from every background to build a career in the skilled trades.

Kathleen Wynne’s Liberals let young people down by dramatically reducing the Apprenticeship Training Tax Credit and cutting the Youth Jobs Strategy making it harder for apprentices starting out in their careers. But Doug Ford is taking things from bad to worse. He’s eliminated the College of Trades without replacing it, and his deep cuts to education mean high school classes that introduce students to the skilled trades will be squeezed out of the curriculum.

If we don’t invest for the long-term in high quality apprenticeships, we will face more skills shortages and the safety of workplaces will be put at risk with apprentices not receiving adequate training and supervision.

Giving a speech about the trades is fine; but doing that while cutting opportunities for youth to choose a career in the trades is the height of hypocrisy.

The construction trades invest over $40 million each year in training. The province needs a government willing to do their part, and to invest in the skills that will open new doors for young people and generate economic growth that will benefit all Ontarians.”