Canadian Contractor

Ontario Liberals, through the Ontario College of Trades, finding a way to pay the carpenters' union back for their support

"Imagine homeowners having their renovations stopped immediately because they are using non-certified, non-union labour?"

Print this page

March 7, 2014 by Alec Caldwell

On my way home last night from a RONA trade show, I received the news that, under all of our noses, the Ontario College of Trades appears set to make carpentry a “certified” dues-paying trade. This news broke last night thanks to the Toronto Sun. See the story here.

Well, it seems the Ontario Liberal government, in their fight to get reelected and to get support of unions, is finding a way, through the Ontario College of Trades that they created, to pay the carpenters’ union back for their support. What’s next, the drywaller and flooring unions?

Here is the Ontario College of Trades’ new regulation – Performing renovations. O. Reg. 275/11, s. 15.

If this goes through, imagine the implications for the entire industry. Homebuilding will be hit by (legal) carpenter shortages, carpentry students coming out of college will be affected… maybe even Mike Homes, to my knowledge not a certified carpenter, would not be able to ply his trade.

Who will train you to certification as a legal carpenter? The unions!  You would need to become a member. So the unions in Ontario, having stuck the WSIB down the throats of independent operators and the self-employed renovators over the past year, will be doing the same via the College of Trades.

Imagine homeowners having their renovations stopped immediately because they are using non-certified (non-union) labour? Sounds like a nightmare? Well, just look at what the Ontario College of Trades has the power to do, under the law. They can make it illegal for a tradesperson to work if you don’t follow their rules.

To oppose this, the home renovation industry needs to be united. The unions are united.

I say we need to do what the trucking industry did a few years back when it created a giant slowdown on the 401. We need to renovators to bring their vehicles down to Bay and Wellesley, where the Ontario College of Trades’ offices are, and cause gridlock. We need pickets and signs, we need public awareness and we need the media to pay attention to what the Ontario College of Trades is doing. We need to make it clear how wrong is this and how undemocratic this is. After all, the Ontario College of Trades is run by appointment, not by election.

This latest move by the OCOT looks very much to me to be an under-the-table deal. Dalton McGuinty’s government created OCOT. But I’d hoped Kathleen Wynne might be fresh air – that was clearly wrong. This development from the OCOT shows greed – and that people will do anything to hang onto power.

Let’s all get busy and put our heads together and become a mass of people calling for strength. I know unions – especially being brought up in Scotland. There is a place for them, but unions squeezing the self-employed in the home renovations industry? It’s just wrong.

CARAHS was founded as a non profit association to help educate, inform and mentor self employed renovators, builders, trades and home services.

We have over 130 online Health & Safety e-courses at

Toll free 1-866-366-29301-866-366-2930

Send SMS
Add to Skype
You’ll need Skype CreditFree via Skype

Alec Caldwell

Alec Caldwell

Alec Caldwell is the Founder of CARAHS, a Health & Safety Organization. We are approved providers by the Ministry of Labour (Ontario) to teach Working at Heights Training (Pro#34609) Visit the Ministry of Labour's web site to view our listing
All posts by

Print this page


Have your say:

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


17 Comments » for Ontario Liberals, through the Ontario College of Trades, finding a way to pay the carpenters' union back for their support
  1. Dave Templeton says:

    Dear Garfield Dunlop,
    Where is Tim Hudak on this one? We don’t hear anything. The loudest cry should come from the opposition leader, no?

  2. questo says:

    Just relax would you?

    This shit is going no where, this is a card been played.

    Apparently the signs are the OCOT is in a big hole called deep debt.

    I gave an example in this magazine in others pages what may going on, just look for all this magazine pages.

    The OCOT is on the court for the electrical apprenticeship. Also the MPP PC ask the attorney general to open a investigation on the IBEW Bias of The OCOT either he follow that or not is another question.

    I believe Honorable MPPs TIm Hudak, Garfield Dunlop, Randy Hellier, may soon make a public appeal.

    The liberals and their cronies turn themselves now into a volcano and the NDP are collecting the ashes.

  3. Questo says:

    The CEO of Ontario College of Trades OCOT

    This info is all public.

    David H. Tsubouchi B.A., L.L.B., L.L.D.

    Member of Advisory Board, NWT Uranium Corp.

    Age Total Calculated Compensation This person is connected to 61 board members in 7 different organizations across 11 different industries.

    See Board Relationships
    61 —


    Mr. David H. Tsubouchi, B.A, LLB, LLD served as a Consultant of Dentons Canada LLP. Mr. Tsubouchi served as an Advisor of Regulatory & Government Relations at Asian Coast Development Ltd. He served as Chair of the Management Board of Cabinet of the Province of Ontario. As the Chair of Management Board, he served as effectively the Chief Operating Officer and the Chief Financial Officer of the Province of Ontario. He served as a Chair of Planning and Development of Markham ..

    Its a recipe for disaster, to many boards, can you see clear now, the rain is over.
    This guy has to go and all of them to hell and never to come back. Man of many arts and performer of none. He only looks for the money and prestige on our cost
    Does he have all of those certifications? I doubted it.

    A gaming lawyer maybe nothing more.

    Now lets ask him if any Uranium ore were sold under the table in the time he was there. Maybe under the freedom act info request to this company we may find some rats.

  4. Questo says:

    Appeal to all compulsory trades people, and voluntaries also.

    Have you notice, in special those received the OCOT envelops of renewal, what is in read color letter?


    Now if you received the second envelop, in black color,


    Now here is the real important issue: Now the mail delivery knows where and who is a trades man/woman. Isn’t this interesting?

    Specific info what is in the envelop, right at the front of the envelop. Now all of us may know where this can lead into. Now the mail service she/he even knows about your affairs status towards the OCOT. Now we may have more enemies,,,,, more snitchers in our front doors.

    The mail service he/she, may use the envelops name, check any ones status.
    And may sale it, for a price, to those of third parties friends and so on.

    Now how many bogus clams will arise? There is a possibility for loop holes here.

    Its a label, and describing content, It can be argued under the discriminatory and protected info act, privacy act, on the Canadian Charter of Rights and freedoms, discreet label, and describing content, is unlawful; because opens the doors for criminal activity.

    Have you received a such a thing before related to any of your certifications of career?. Someone was told to wait for the second envelop,,,,,,.

    Wake up trades people its time, I am doing my part in every direction I can, I have been in contact with may MPPs from the PC on this mater and others. And thanks to H, MPP Garfield Dunlop and others, in paying close attention to my letters and all the others. Expressing all the concerns in this matter of the OCOT.

    Some NDPs were contacted but never even bought to look at it.

    There is no difficulty the strong intellect cannot surmount.

    The whole secret of existence is to have no fear.

    Please pass this info on, to those would love to be informed.

  5. Hello everyone,
    Thank you for responding. We need to stop this quickly, so please support this by going to Stop the Trade Tax and sign their petition to close the OCOT down. Many organizations and association are connected to this web site (including CARAHS) who are all pushing big time.

    Now with this news, its huge and a deal under the table with Union’s trying to take over home renovations and all wood working in Ontario is crazy. The home owners need to know that if they are trying to dodge paying HST, try paying union rates for their renovations.

    I believe its time all contractors organized, get in their trucks, adding trailers if the use them and jam University Ave, outside the OCOT office, drawing big TV and newspaper and lets educate the OCOT is no College, its the same as the organization who gives us sticker yearly for our vehicle license plates.

    The farmers jammed the Toronto streets with tractors, the trucking industry did it closing the 401 and other highways. Unit we must stand.

    I also ask everyone to go to the free online Canadian Contractor magazine and sign up from their weekly edition. It’ll keep everyone connected and you can add comments. Its about growing awareness as quickly as possible. Its about gathering individual contractors who normally bid against each other and this time to stand together against this bad move.

    Lets all get busy.
    Thank you.

    Alec Caldwell CARAHS Founder
    Toll free 1 866 366 2930
    A non profit organization

  6. Here is the Stop the Trade Tax web site. PLEASE QUICKLY sign the petition there. Thank you.

  7. Questo says:

    Alec, if the bill MPP Garfield Dunlop fails, we all know what to do next, don’t we trades people? This monster of violations called OCOT have to be abolish, is getting to annoying and to the point of dangers economic collapse.

    Niagara falls water turned into blue cooler, code blue yeah,,,,,,.

    The premier today (10/03/2014) criticise Mr. Harper about free trade agreement with south Korea, which may impact the auto industry, really; they are destroying our trades and the way of life in this province,,,, what a fool.

    If the premier have just a little bite of decency left, should quit or fix the hard ship they created on all of us.

    OCOT is nothing more then a club of thieves, getting out of control, found a way trough loopholes on the legislature. How could the committee and the LG allow a such thing to take place? I really wonder. Every bill have to be reviewed, what really went wrong with this OCOT bullshit?. Did they lost all the morals and the capacity to the point of insanity? That’s what we all are seeing now the exposure of failures from the OCOT. I believe the big bang is about to happen on their financial status.

    To those which certifications under the TQAA look into the legislature act 1990, 1998, 2009, appears to not clarify those under the TQAA before 1998.

  8. HI Questo
    I think you are spot on in what you say and even adding the latest on our agreement with south Korea. All damaging stuff for the Canadian workers.

    Back to our big topic. We ,including CARAHS, the Canadian Contractor and many more supports are having a phone meeting this Friday with MPP Garfield Dunlop about this latest and most dangerous situation.

    This issue has been dragging on and I know last year there was a demonstration in Hamilton and a seen Rob Koci (CC Publisher) in from of the camera.

    I strongly believe in people power ands its a call to all self employed contractors who normal bib against each other to get work, but this time stand should to shoulder in one common purpose and protect the home renovation market and all those using wood. Its about stopping this as quickly as possible anf to bring in the public in to the debate the this so called College (OCOT) is not a college and basically an organization that issues you a license plate sticker yearly for your vehicle. Again noting if the homeowners are not crazy paying the GST and cause so much grief and hardship in our industry. How would the homeowners like to pay union rates for the work they complete at there home. It looks like only unions can certify carpenters, so they have to become card carrying members for life.

    I say the action now to quickly bring this to ahead, while the likes of MPP Garfield works away on the inside, they we do what the farmers done and jam Toronto with tractors. This time contractors in the building industry, in the home improvement industry. I say jam in to their vehicles and all get together around University Ave, right outside the OCOT office and go round the block at a slow speed and jam it.

    This sets up the big nations media looking for big breaking news and events. We get great spokes person like Rob Koci CC Publisher) telling the public what’s really happening and this so College does not educate trades, they just hand out licenses and if homeowners they not happy with paying GST on jobs, how about paying unions rates?

    Everyone needs to take action and we need to stop this quickly, so please support this by going to Stop the Trade Tax and sign their petition to close the OCOT down. Many organizations and association are connected to this web site (including CARAHS) who are all pushing big time.

    If you have not already done this, I ask everyone to go to the free online here to the Canadian Contractor magazine and sign up from their weekly edition. It’ll keep everyone connected and you can add comments. Its about growing awareness as quickly as possible. Its about gathering individual contractors who normally bid against each other and this time to stand together against this bad move.
    Lets all get busy.
    Thank you.

    Alec Caldwell CARAHS Founder
    Toll free 1 866 366 2930
    A non profit organization

  9. Hi Questo…I’m calling for immediate action of taking a ton of hard working guys, into Toronto. These same guys have had all these things shoved down their throats, including this HST which again government devised and its causing so much hardship between businesses when homeowner don’t want to pays it, creating part of the underground market. the that government This union and certification just increases that market.

    So maybe we need a petition of those willing to take a drive in to the city. I’ll be in front with my white horse and warring a kilt (Well then maybe not) and with a heavy Scottish accent. Some last week said I sounded angry in my writings. After meeting me he changed it to passion. I’m very passionate about the wrongs done to people in this world, especially home renovators and trade well look after.


    Every contractor knows others……Its time for some action and we would not be bring MPP Garfield in to this, as he cannot be seen to be apart of such activities. Its about people power. ITS ABOUT FREEDOM

  10. Quest says:

    Alec. Better wait and see what the results of the MPP Garfield Dunlop private bill ends up, at least first introduction, soon IMO. If this bill fails, it bill be like Einstein E= MC to the square, got it. Just give a little more time. The 85.000.00 losing their jobs over night by April 8 this year will be interesting.

    Has this shit made to the news media yet? I have seen only at the Garfield site and the contractors site and the O electrical contractors to.

    The 4.300.00 can’t do the certification, another mantra, also those certified under the old program TQAA on 1990 and before, not clarified, more fuel to the fire.

    And don’t forget today, 12/03/2014 a lawsuit was filed on the 65 millions dollars against the Liberals regarding the slot machines on the horse track. IMHO, the Liberals are asking to be booted out. Things are getting more interesting day by day.

    Remember, a full package is always better. Yeah, MPP Garfield Dunlop, in my view shouldn’t be involved at all in any manifestation. Contacting him and Randy hellier and others too, to shake the Liberals government on this issue is a must.

    However, Garfield, his doing a remark able job inside the Queens Park Thanks to him, grate honorable, Also MPP Randy Helleir too.

    I would like to see MPP Tim Hudack screaming on these issues!

    In the mean time the renovators contractors can continue to refuse pay to this OCOT. 50 calls per hour constant or more to the OCOT desk, telling them over and over the same thing, we will not pay you, you are unlawfull, will make them going nuts, to the point they may have to disconnect their phone lines or put them on hold. This way their job can’t go anywhere. Hundreds emails per hour or more may stall their computers, if this holds for days they will enter in a free fall.

    4 million dollars was apprently wasted from our tax dollars with bogus research to fool all the Liberals into this mess. The crook lawyer, ex Minister on the MTCU came from Winnipeg had first hand knowledge or out to have on this OCOT, not forgetting the OPSEU crook too.

    This later one should mind their business only at the public services not at the private sector. But their goal was to suck everybody money. And apparently turn Ontario Trades into a slavery pit, In’t gonna happen.

    I believe some liberals are regretting at this time, the day of rechoning is coming.

    More into this, another 5 million was loaned to this cronies to start this parasitic garbage. Now one just can wonder how big is the debt hole they are in, apparently they are in panic, at this time.

    The sweet deal of the MTCU losing over 1.5 million dollars a year, on the compulsory certified trades, and the actual M MTCU apparently is blind or sold his soul for sweet pennies. what kind of school was the ex premier? what kind of teacher was he?

    That’s why the OCOT want all the renovation contractors and all others none compulsory trades on payment to save their boat. Its sinking, and a storm is coming from the horizon. In the mean time contact as many is possible, that’s what I am doing, and others too, and a email or text alert will do it to, like 1 to 100, chain reaction.

    What about Rob Koci going there and interviewing them, OCOT goons, maybe we all can see their faces in a panic mode. Rob will search for the rats tail.

    Niagara went blue, use this title.

    Tanks Alec, The info you posted will be posted in clubs all over the area where I am at asap.

  11. Questo says:

    HI Alec, Two large community clubs were contacted, and guess what:
    About 98% of those where there of a group at one club were on the dark.
    I mean a lot of different trades are not informed, what is going on?.

    Your Info were given to those wanted, and surprise,,,,,,,, people were very receptive. Another club I had a meeting with the desk people, cazzo cazzo mama mia, you know, were not a aware either.

    Now I a m trying to get the presidents of these large community clubs if they want like, a large reception on this issues, maybe you or Rob Koci may have to address the meeting, on further notice.

    All the info were given, including the MPPs Randy and Garfield, and they were told about the phone conference too. I notice people are in the state of awe.

    A good way to make payments to the OCOT if one wish to pay at all, for those on the compulsory trades now. There is people with brilliant ideas everywhere.


    Do not sign their document, keep it, don’t sent to them at all.

    To whom this concern, OCOT

    As we all know this pass winter was very bad, and still, and I am in financial stress.

    My priorities are:

    a) Provide financial security status for me and my family, That’s my legal obligation.

    b) My founds are short, and I am having difficulty make ends meat.

    b) I am working beyond the point of my own safety and health protection,
    working to many hours, to support the many unwanted burden taxation in all shapes and forms, plus unnecessary fees and memberships, unwanted plutocracies; so called democratic rule of law.

    d) As I am trying to protect my image, my business, my family, my credit, and so on: would like to make some payment, to contribute to your unwanted idiologies. without any benefit, toward my career.

    (Option one, $ 6.66, option two, $9.99, temporay only ,

    Option three from $40.00 to $60.00 or less ( on $120) ( Check) as your college cash it, a full payment, will be deemed accepted in full agreement and license or membership without delay. I will fill your unwanted membership when your confirmation of acceptance is meet.

    So here is a check on the total, $6.66 dollars, per monthly bases, but nothing will warranty the next payment, because if your college deemed my certificate illegal I not be able to work.

    So accepting this payment means an active (temporary) agreement, and I will be able to work and support me, my family and trying to control my hard financial shape. Please sent to me by mail the accepted agreement in writing.

    if this proposals aren’t accepted, by your college, I will not be able provide and support me, my family, all the expenses I do have and obligation agreements, as house mortgage, utility bills, transport, food, cloths, property tax, medical bills, and others etc.

    If I lose my job my financial hard ship, will turn into hell, and recourses are: legal action will be taken, for imposing and forcing payments which I can not afford in exchange of decertified my career of chose.

    If your college, choose not to agree, and want a full payment, will be seen a breach of laws under the affordable means. I remind your college, Canada have
    a lot of NFPO on the third world countries to prevent abusive ways of imposing tyrannical systems with no means of their own existence, to prevent abuse.

    So your college by not excepting afford able means of payment will be consider unlawfull. And further more was founded on these bases..



    After the second later of notice, there is 60 days to send payment, for those wish to pay them.

    good luck to all

  12. Hello everyone.

    Tomorrow afternoon we are having a joint phone meeting with MPP Garfield Dunlop, who says if voted in to the Ontario Government, He’ll close the Ontario College of Trades (OCOT) He has been running for this since the inception of OCOT, along with STOP THE TRADE TAX coalition, including the Canadian Contractor Magazine. Rob Koci and publisher of the CC magazine organized tomorrows phone connections event and this conversation will include Steve Payne, CC Editor and others who have been fighting to stop the OCOT.


    There’s a great number of contractors and trades effected by this. I blogged this on HomeStars, as I’m sure most of their contractor members will be affected and many don’t know this news.

    Can you see it……. a converging of construction vehicles of all size and shape, all driving south and north on Bay St in Toronto, right outside the OCOT head office at 5 mph. This will get everyone’s attention. Even the farmers took action this way and the truckers many years back. Its called National news.

    We have to bring in the public to this and tell them, many homeowner what’s really going to happen at their future home renovations projects. UNION RATES and lots of tea breaks.

    The OCOT already has a regulation number assigned to cover this change. OCOT is serious in making this law any day now and we have to be just as serious in showing our numbers against this change. We need to rally everyone and show strength. THIS IS THE MOMENT. THIS IS THE TIME. The industry is getting beat up so much under regulations and the cash underground market is making it hard for honest companies to survive. Now OCOT wants to unemployed people who have been plying their trade for year, make them illegal, including carpenters, kitchen cabinet installers, wooden floor layers and about anyone else who cuts wooden products.

    Further I believe the DRYWALL Union is next in line to sign with the OCOT. WHO’S NEXT………EVERYTRADES PERSON OUT THERE ARE IN THE OCOT SIGHTS.

    What I say here is my personal opinion and I don’t speak this of behalf on the Stop the Trade Tax coalition or MPP Garfield Dunlop or the Canadian Contractor or anyone else. I speak as a great Canadian, where half my life was lived in Scotland. I say Braveheart was a great movie and its to FREEDOM we need to hold….Freedom of choice.

    I’m sure you will all hear the outcome of tomorrows talks through the greatest magazine called the: Canadian Contractor and through our partners the Coalition STOP THE TRADE TAX, who’s statement today was blogged on the CARAHS web site at:

    Lets get united and stand together. Never has there been a time recently that our industry has come under so much attack. Every NON UNION tradesperson needs to stand shoulder to shoulder.

    Alec Caldwell

    CARAHS Founder – CARAHS is a non profit association that cares about you and your future.

  13. Questo says:

    Hi Alec, I believe this spring budget will not pass, imho, the premier will need the opposition to allowed, and the NDPs, maybe, wouldn’t allow themselves to be fooled again, it maybe to risky for them at this time.

    I wrote letters to the MPP Garfield and Randy hillier with all the concerns, and flaws, this OCOT have in place. They are well informed.

    I believe the PC is at full speed on the OCOT and others too, to many side agencies, to much waste and miss management on the public founds.

    I have a feeling elections are getting closer.

    After the MPP Garfield Dunlop phone meeting, please publicise it.

    Your idea is great, but a lot of contractors need be advised, for that matter, lets see what MPP say about it. If those may loose their jobs by April, will be informed, then the party is much bigger.

    The CEO from the OCOT need to be publicly criticise it, Tuna Dave, ( the Liberal last card) and their board of cronies.

    Demand them, out, ousted, investigated for this kind of bullshit, may turn like the next gas plant scandal. The actual MTCU Minister is the one deleted the emails about the gas plant scandal, he is under investigation, why he still in that place?

    To do that, one may have to get all their wages payments and bonus ( OCOT) to show to the public. Better be on the TV live, for all to see, got it, as a surprise, not edited. Put that on the net, in this magazine and others, journals and so on.

    Tomorrow I will be in touch with more people and business, about this issue.

    Lets hope for the best.

  14. Mike Ducharme says:

    Alec…..couple of points…..first off unions promote apprenticeships……mandatory certification for carpenters has little to do with the unions and more to do with trade recognition…….we carpenters….the certified ones have have completed an apprenticeship program 7200 hrs then successfully completed a Certificate of Qualification Exam…….yet you have people out in the construction sector who call themselves carpenters….. sell it to the customer that way….yet have no formal training and haven’t been tested……..can someone who reads law books call themselves a lawyer…..or someone who takes a first aid course call themselves a doctor or nurse…..the answer my friend no….so why should it be any different for carpenters…..there are several compulsory trades such a electricians and plumbers working both in the union and non union sectors for years… issue…..why is this any different… for the comment about Mike Homes…..Mike is in business because of these non certified carpenters working the trade with no clue on construction techniques, code requirements and safety standards……It takes more then a hammer and tape measure to be a carpenter

  15. Hi Mike….Appreciate your feed back and some good points. The one comment I’m confused about is the Mike Homes one, I don’t believe Holmes is a certified carpenter himself, he says his Dad taught him. Do that not make him a hammer and tape measure carpenter?

    Again Safety standards by home renovations contractors, many carry Fall Protection course completion cards that comply under the OHSA. They also carry WHMIS cards, supervision cards, asbestos and more. They even carry liability insurance and many pay in to WSIB. Again I cannot say everyone does and there is still room for improvement.

  16. Dave Anderson says:

    What power do Ontario College Of Trades have over me as a Home Owner doing my own renovation