Ontario’s new marketing campaign aims to combat skilled trades shortage
By Kavita Sabharwal-Chomiuk
According to the Ministry of Labour, from January to September 2019, Ontario employers had, on average, 204,000 job openings across all occupations and industries. Of these, 13,000 were in the construction sector.
In an effort to address a serious labour shortage, which may only get worse, the Ontario government has launched a new marketing campaign to highlight quality, well-paying and flexible careers in the trades, under the slogan ‘Find a Career You Wouldn’t Trade.’
“We need to do a better job at enticing young people and their parents to the skilled trades,” said Monte McNaughton, Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development. “For too long, we haven’t viewed these challenging positions as a viable first option. That needs to change.”
The campaign reflects the passion of three real skilled tradespeople with in-demand careers and high-income potential in their work environments as a tower crane operator, a steamfitter and an arborist.
In addition, the government is investing approximately $75 million in three programs to expose high school students to the trades: $12.7 million in the Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program, $42 million in the Specialist High Skills major program and $20.8 million in a pre-apprenticeship program.
“The reality is that the skilled trades offer exciting and challenging careers that often require solid math and problem-solving skills, and expose people to the latest technologies such as 3D printing and robotics,” Minister McNaughton added. “When it comes to opportunity, to earning potential, to having a chance to start your own business, the skilled trades come out on top.”
The ads are available to view on ONgov’s YouTube channel. They will run digitally, in movie theatres and on Tim Hortons TV across the province. Employers interested in hiring an apprentice can register at Ontario.ca/HireAnApprentice.