Simplifying Ontario’s Skilled Trades System

Proposed legislation will help apprentices prepare for in-demand jobs and complete their training faster

The current skilled trades and apprenticeship system is hard to navigate and discourages people from pursuing well-paying, in-demand and life-changing careers in the skilled trades.

As part of our PC government’s Skilled Trades Strategy, we’re simplifying Ontario’s skilled trades and apprenticeship system to encourage employer and apprentice participation by introducing legislation to transform the system and make it more efficient and easier to access and navigate. 

“Skilled trades workers are the engine of our economy,” said Monte McNaughton, MPP for Lambton—Kent—Middlesex and Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development. “Under the current system, responsibilities are shared between OCOT and the Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development, causing confusion and added burden for people wanting to pursue a career in the skilled trades, which leads to employers struggling to find qualified skilled trades workers. That is why our government is building a skilled trades system that attracts more people into well-paying and meaningful careers that are truly life-changing.”

Our government’s Building Opportunities in the Skilled Trades Act, if passed, would clearly separate and enhance the services provided to apprentices, skilled trades workers and their employers.

We are also proposing a new Crown agency called “Skilled Trades Ontario” that would enable tradespeople to get their certification in one place, with many services offered digitally.

We will continue to put apprentices and tradespeople first to ensure the replacement of OCOT with a new agency is thoughtful and measured so there is no disruption in services to apprentices, journeypersons and sponsors/employers.