Canada is growing, but as demand for new building continues to grow and our population continues to age, the rate of retirements in Canada’s construction workforce is expected to significantly outstrip the number of new recruits. But that’s just part of the challenge. By 2030, all 9.2 million of Canada’s baby boomers will reach retirement age.
That’s why it’s so important to ensure young Canadians have the opportunity to learn a trade that will lead to a good-paying career. Skilled construction trades include one of the largest groups of apprentices in Canada. In fact, apprentices in a unionized setting are 30% more likely to complete their training than those outside a union.
In 2016, Canada ranked 16th among OECD countries in funding for training, education and labour markets. We can do more to fund job training and apprenticeships.
Some US states have pursued right-to-work-for-less legislation. But in those jurisdictions, average wages are $2 an hour lower, wages grow more slowly, and the jobs hit hardest are those which traditionally provide pathways to the middle class.