Gates wants tradespeople to have a voice in new Skilled Trades Ontario agency

wayne gates

Niagara Falls NDP MPP Wayne Gates says tradespeople should have a voice in a new agency the Ford government has unveiled for the sector.

The government announced today Skilled Trades Ontario will replace the Ontario College of Trades.

The provincial government says the agency's online services will allow people to schedule classes and exams, submit forms and pay fees in one place.

Gates, who is the NDP critic for Training, Trades and Apprenticeships, says it is about time the government rushed in and dismantled the College of Trades with no thought to what would replace it.

He says Ontario’s tradespeople have been left in limbo for two years.
  
Gates says moving forward, Ford needs to make sure that skilled trades people have a say on all training and certification decisions so that we can ensure the integrity of skilled trades is maintained.

He says he is concerned about the lack of representation on the Skilled Trades Ontario board by those directly from the trades. 

Labour Minister Monte McNaughton says the new system aims to address a labour shortage in the province and make more people choose trades careers.

The government promises that the new website will cut applicant processing and registration times to 12 days from 60 days.