29
NOV
2018

Joint message from Ontario College of Trades and Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities on changes to Ontario’s skilled trades system

Dear Ontario College of Trades Member:

On behalf of the Ontario College of Trades (College) and the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities (Ministry), we would like to share with you information that impacts members of Ontario’s skilled trades system.

Ontario government passes Bill 47, Making Ontario Open for Business Act
On November 21, 2018, the Ontario government passed the Making Ontario Open for Business Act, which makes significant changes to the apprenticeship and skilled trades system. This includes preparing for the wind-down of the College. You can read the Ministry’s announcement on modernizing Ontario’s apprenticeship system here, including their intention to propose a replacement model for the regulation of the skilled trades and apprenticeship system in Ontario by early 2019. Passage of the Making Ontario Open for Business Act means there are some immediate changes that come into effect.

Journeyperson-to-apprentice ratios now 1:1
Effective immediately, all journeyperson‐to‐apprentice ratios are 1:1 for the 33 construction trades that are subject to ratios. This means that subject to their collective agreements, employers and/or sponsors of these 33 trades can now begin to hire apprentices at a rate of 1:1 for each journeyperson.

Moratorium on trade classifications and reclassifications
Also effective immediately is a moratorium on trade classifications and reclassifications. This means that trades can no longer be referred to the Classification Roster for the trade classification and reclassification process. The government has committed to working with industry to gather feedback on an appropriate way to undertake trade classification reviews within the broader regulatory framework. We will update you as this process is clarified.

Intent to remove low-volume trades
The Ministry intends to remove 24 low-volume trades under the Ontario College of Trades and Apprenticeship Act, 2009. The Ministry has posted this intent on Ontario’s Regulatory Registry for feedback by January 10, 2019. The posting, including instructions on how to provide feedback, can be found online in English or French.

Ministry and College continue to deliver key services
Also, with the passage of the Making Ontario Open for Business Act, discussions will begin about winding down the College. We would like to emphasize that at this time, the Ministry and the College will continue to deliver key services. Among other duties, the Ministry continues to register training agreements with apprentices, assess employer eligibility, and administer Certificate of Qualification exams. The College supports this work by continuing to issue skilled trades credentials (Certificates of Qualification and Statements of Membership), verify credentials at worksites across the province, and support labour mobility through credential verification.

Valid credentials remain a legal requirement
We would like to emphasize that at this time, the Ministry and the College will continue to deliver key services, and valid College-issued credentials remain a requirement to engage in several trades under the Ontario College of Trades and Apprenticeship Act, 2009. As such, the College will continue to process membership fees. Apprentices are also still required to maintain valid Statements of Membership with the College in order to hold active Registered Training Agreements with the Ministry.

To check the status of your membership, please access the College’s member portal at www.collegeoftrades.ca or contact the College at 1-855-299-0028 between Monday and Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Keeping the skilled trades community informed
Although the College continues to deliver the day-to-day functions required under the Ontario College of Trades and Apprenticeship Act, 2009, we are in a time of transition. We will provide information on any significant changes on OCOT’s website or by email.

With the goal of creating a stronger skilled trades system in Ontario, the Ministry and the College will work closely together to support any transition. Together, we are committed to keeping you informed of changes that impact your skilled trades work across the province.

Sincerely,

Jennifer Cooper                                                                            Sarah McQuarrie
Director, Legal and Regulatory Affairs                                      Director, Apprenticeship Branch
Ontario College of Trades                                                           Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities