Canadian Contractor

Steve Payne   

The Ontario College of Trades is not democratic or transparent

Canadian Contractor

Our reader "Questo" points out the Ontario College of Trades was not created by a vote by the province's tradespeople, whereas the teachers in the province voted to create their own College of Teachers in 1997. Questo says the OCOT is undemocratic and lacks transparency.

With the announcement that the Ontario College of Trades is looking at forcing the enrolment of carpenters (who would have to join OCOT, and who – presumably – would only be able to DO so if they were certified), Ontario contractors have jammed our mailbox with demands that the OCOT be disbanded. That’s not easy. The OCOT was created by government legislation in 2009. Unless that legislation is repealed, OCOT is here to stay. 

Questo” addressed this stuff in a post last week, replying to a “15 Year Carpenter” who supports the OCOT, in general…

“To the 15 years carpenter, looks like you love them so much (you’ve become) one of their trolls.

Remember, city by-laws are approved or disputed through councils. (The councils) got (there) by vote…. (Building) inspections are under the power of a democratic vote, and transparent manner.


The Ministry of Labour is under direct legislative power, under the elected government. Or do you forget that?

(The OCOT is) a private organization. It’s like a security services company…

The Ontario government create this mess called the Ontario College of Trades. It was not voted in like the Ontario College of Teachers, which took place in May 1997. And the by-laws of the OCOT are only changed and approved by them.

Your argument (in favour of the OCOT) on paper is right, but only for democratic and transparent powers. The OCOT (does not operate in a) democratic and transparent manner, so is illegal. Can you appoint politicians and councils?

“Compulsory trades” like us have paid for stamps (on our Certificates of Qualifications) to the Ministry of Trades, Colleges and Universities every three years. No reason to have this collection agency up on us.

Unfair and arbitrary actions have no place in this province. The one that started this whole thing, was a union president… (Yet) union members vote, right? Why wasn’t (the OCOT) founded on a vote?

What makes you thing they are legit? Because a guy on video says so?”


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