The Ontario government has launched Skilled Trades Ontario, a new crown agency to improve trades training and simplify services within the sector.
The agency will promote and market the trades, develop the latest training and curriculum standards, and provide a streamlined user-friendly experience for tradespeople.
The new online services will help apprentices conveniently manage their careers, with a centralized portal for scheduling classes and exams, submitting forms, paying fees, and more. These changes will reduce the skilled labour shortage the province currently faces—estimated at 350,000 by 2025—by making it easier for more people to learn about and enter the trades.
“The skilled trades are the backbone of our province, offering 144 well-paying and in-demand careers for people to choose from,” said Melissa Young, chief executive officer and registrar of Skilled Trades Ontario. “I commend the government for bringing generational change that will remove the stigma surrounding the trades, cut down on red tape, and ensure all young people know these jobs offer a clear path to a better life.”