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Ontario adopts Dean Report on College of Trades

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November 22, 2015 by STAFF REPORT

Ontario is strengthening the industry-driven governing body responsible for promoting and modernizing skilled trades in the province.

Tony DeanThe province, in partnership with the Ontario College of Trades, has accepted the recommendations made by former Secretary of Cabinet Tony Dean, in his report, Supporting a Strong and Sustainable Ontario College of TradesOntario will bring forward proposed legislative changes in the spring legislative session and will work closely with the College of Trades to implement the Dean Report recommendations.

The proposed changes would help improve the College’s processes and clarify its mandate by:  

    • Supporting the existing Trade Boards to update and bring consistency to all trades’ scopes of practice
    • Reviewing how trades are classified through establishment of an independent and evidence-based process that will use risk of harm as a key criterion
    • Establishing clearer and more concise criteria on how journeyperson-to-apprentice ratios are determined
    • Developing an enforcement and compliance committee and appeal process to resolve potential conflicts earlier, as well as ensure enforcement activities are consistently carried out with safety and the public interest in mind.

Dean conducted a year-long review of the College of Trades operations that included consultations with several hundred tradespeople, employers and industry and trade boards representing more than 70 trades.

“My recommendations are designed to put the College on a stronger and more sustainable footing and I’m confident that over time they will result in even better support for skilled tradespeople across Ontario,” Dean said in a prepared statement.

The Ontario College of Trades officially opened for membership on April 8, 2013 and provides members with benefits such as recognition as a skilled-trades professional, enforcement of trade regulations, and a mechanism to ensure public safety through a discipline and complaints process. There are 237,000 active members in the Ontario College of Trades in more than 150 apprenticeable trades, including the construction, industrial, motive power and service sectors.

“We are pleased that Mr. Dean’s Report endorses the valuable work (the College does) on a daily basis to protect the public interest and modernize and promote the skilled trades in Ontario,” said Pat Blackwood Chair of the Board of Governors, Ontario College of Trad
es. “We are committed to working with the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities on the development of an implementation strategy that is effective and practical.”

“Our government firmly believes that Ontario’s skilled tradespeople deserve to have a central role in guiding the future of their own industry, and Mr. Dean’s report confirms the importance of the Ontario College of Trades in supporting this important goal,” said Reza Moridi, Minister of Training, Colleges, and Universities in release.

“We will work closely with the College over the coming months to implement these recommendations in a timely and responsible manner and help it remain strong and sustainable long into the future.”

Ontario’s ongoing commitment to strengthen the skilled trades and apprenticeship system is part of the government’s plan to build Ontario up. The plan includes investing in people’s talents and skills, making the largest investment in public infrastructure in Ontario’s history, creating a dynamic, innovative environment where business thrives, and building a secure retirement savings plan.

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