OTTAWA, March 29, 2012 /CNW/ - The Canadian Building Trades are encouraged by the Federal Budget tabled in the House of Commons today by Finance Minister James Flaherty.
Robert Blakely, Director of Canadian Affairs, says "this Budget highlights a number of workforce development initiatives which we support. The skilled tradespeople who go to work every day on large energy projects ought to benefit from the streamlining of the regulatory process. When we are workforce planning and training apprentices, having this kind of roadmap is invaluable. We support a system that is fair, and rigorous for the environment - we also support a system that makes economic sense for workers and industry."
The Budget also makes some straightforward connections between the Employment Insurance process and the Temporary Worker Program. Blakely says the changes make good use of information in regional markets where available workforces in Canada can do the work. He says "there is no point bringing workers in at enormous costs to employers and unions when skilled trades people are available in a nearby region or province.
Extension of the Wage Earner Protection Plan to cover severance and termination pay ought to assist those affected the most by any unforeseen economic conditions.
However, Canadians Building Trades Unions remain very concerned about the impacts of Bill C-377, which endangers our ability to build projects across the country and create jobs. C-377 is intended to fix a problem that does not exist. Instead, it actually duplicates processes that are already in place to provide accountability and transparency for our workers and would create an expanded, expensive and redundant bureaucracy. Our costs of compliance will be extraordinary and beyond that required of any other tax entity.
"We are private sector unions. Unlike charities and political parties, we receive no public subsidies or public monies," said Blakely, "Our workers and their families enjoy tax deductibility on the dues they pay to the Union. We are not publicly subsidized; we are funded entirely through dues from workers."
Robert Kucheran , Canadian Director of the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT) says this Federal Budget and the tone it sets is an opportunity to work with government and positively impact the Canadian labour market for the next number of years."
About the BCTD
The North America-wide BCTD AFL-CIO (American Federation of Labour - Congress of Industrial Organizations) coordinates activities and provides resources to 15 affiliated trade unions in the construction, maintenance and fabrication industries. In Canada, the BCTD represents 500,000 skilled trades workers.
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