Canadian Contractor


Apprenticeship ratio stupidity in Ontario: Comment number 5,033

Well, probably not five thousand comments, but it sure feels like it. So many young people want to work in the trades in Ontario but the ratios system prevents them.

Yet another sad story from someone who appears to be eminently qualified and wants to work in the trades in Ontario. 

Please, let’s see to it in every way that we possibly can:  this ratios issue MUST be rectified.

As an aspiring electrician who achieved honor role, graduating from pre-apprenticeship school in 2013, I didn’t find a job in the trade until a year and a half ago. And worst of all, the company I am with still hasn’t signed me on as an apprentice.

Every day I have to wonder, is it time to search for a new company? Should I start my own business? It’s not fair that brothers before us had it so easy, where they could walk down the street looking for a job and find work before the day was over; and yet we have to beg for a job, only to wonder if we will get signed on this time.

“Go to the Union” they say. I’ve spoken to young guys like myself that got hired by the JAC/IBEW only to end up waiting for 2+ years, leaving them with no choice but to get yet another job while they wait for their turn.

The current situation at times leaves me feeling defeated and stupid. How can a co-op student come after me and get an apprenticeship with a high-school education, while I’ve made an extra effort to educate myself only to learn how hard it really is to get into this trade, where the workforce supposedly needs replacement.

I’m seriously at the end of my wits here, at 26 years old. I would like to have a house and maybe a family some day. But at this time the trades aren’t looking like the pathway here.

Please, help us; I beg you!

Michael A-A


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2 Comments » for Apprenticeship ratio stupidity in Ontario: Comment number 5,033
  1. Marten says:

    Wow really, what part of the world are you in? In the Ottawa area there is more work then people from what I have seen. I see ads all the time in Kijiji looking for people in the trades.

  2. Steve Brown says:

    Apprenticeship ratio were 3:1 in the 70’s/80’s, Most guys took around 7 years to get the hours required to write the exam. Most halls had 250/500 members on the hiring list. Some lean years one would be lucky to get 6mos. of insurable earnings. When the offshore real estate investment dries up in the GTA,the numbers of unemployed tradesmen will again skyrocket and union members will be comprimising there way of life to make ends meet. Some workers would not write the exam for fear the Journeyman rate of pay would give the employer a reason to lay them off and replace with a fifth year guy. Some workers had (deals)to work off hours without the employer meeting overtime and pension rules just to keep there job. Blackmarket construction will continue to keep lowballing legitimate firms when the desperate times return. The times they are a changing,history may not repeat itself.,and we will live happily ever after.

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