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Legislative Amendments Aim to Reduce Red Tape, Facilitate Consultation and Protect Workers in the Apprenticeship System: Eichler

The Manitoba government is making amendments to the Apprenticeship and Certification Act to modernize the way Manitoba updates Red Seal and provincial training standards and reduce the administrative burden for industry, journeypersons and apprentices, Economic Development and Jobs Minister Ralph Eichler announced today.

“We are introducing several transformations to better meet the needs of industry, facilitate effective consultation and ensure competitiveness, labour mobility and safety within the trades,” said Eichler. “These changes will improve governance within Manitoba’s apprenticeship system to ensure stakeholders voices are heard and acted on in a responsible manner, and to increase Manitoba’s competitive advantage by ensuring we maintain a modern, high-quality apprenticeship system.”

The 2018 Manitoba Apprenticeship and Certification Governance Review took a detailed look at the province’s apprenticeship system. As part of the review, the province heard industry frustrations over delays and found red tape is delaying Manitoba’s ability to update and harmonize trade standards.

Proposed legislative amendments would reduce the time required to update program standards for the voluntary trades by up to a year, which would speed up the implementation of nationally recognized training standards as part of the Red Seal program and allow the province to respond to more industry needs.

Under the current system, it can take up to two-and-a-half years to update the program standards for a specific trade, which requires appointing members to a trade-specific Provincial Advisory Committee, obtaining approval from the Apprenticeship and Certification Board to proceed with a regulatory amendment, writing the amendment and obtaining government approvals.

Bill 61 would allow the Apprenticeship and Certification Board to revise program standards through the use of bylaws and establish standing sector-based committees, while creating focused trade-based industry working groups to provide industry expertise.

“This is fantastic news on the new bill that modernizes the needed changes for apprenticeship in Manitoba,” said Jared Jacobson, president and CEO of Jacobson and Greiner Group of Companies. “As a group of companies, we currently employ all areas of major trades and see this as a positive step to remove barriers and red tape in our industry. As a major employer in the province, this will also allow for more of our trades to become Red Seal certified on an annual basis and, in turn, create more jobs for Manitobans.”

“Our government is committed to meaningful engagement within Manitoba’s apprenticeship system, and we appreciate and value all input received from industry members on any changes made to the trades,” said Eichler. “The province and the board will continue to consult with industry through focused sector-based committees and also may form industry working groups when needed for direct in-depth trade specific expertise.”

The amendments would also allow certification programs for occupations to become designated under the Apprenticeship and Certification Act to set program standards and consistent training.

The Apprenticeship and Certification Board provides a governance and leadership role within its advisory mandate to co-ordinate a relevant, accessible and responsive apprenticeship and certification system in Manitoba. For more information, visit: www.gov.mb.ca/wd/apprenticeship/boardpac.

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