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Letter: Shortage in trades? Show me where

Letter writer disagrees with Employment Minister's comments about a shortage or skilled trade workers
Reader Alex Gorski says he doesn't see any shortage in the skilled trades field as was indicated by Canada's minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour Patty Hajdu. (File)

Re: Aug 2nd 2018, page 3 article on skilled trades

If there is a shortage of skilled trades, I missed it.

With my three-year diploma in electrical techniques, I set out to land an apprenticeship only to find out that I will be vying for a slightly-more-than minimum wage (or just minimum wage) position in Toronto with anywhere from 80 to 3,000 other applicants.  

A cold call or visit in Sudbury informed me that there are already 50+ (minimum) applications and most likely the nephew of the supervisor will be offered the position. Out of province they are adamant only about taking locals and that there is 200 already on the line.

Keeping contact with my classmates lets me know that only a handful got work in their respective fields of study.

Instead of funding colleges to churn out unemployed diploma holders, the government could give serious employers some incentives to those who hire a first- or second-year apprentice (currently there is no funding for entry-level apprenticeship positions) to account for the cost of the learning curve.

As well, the Ontario College of Trades could revise the ratios that prevent many companies from hiring any more than 3 apprentices (1:1 ratio of journeyman to apprentice for the first three apprentices; 3:1 ratio of journeyman to apprentice for 4+ apprentices). 

Alex Gorski