December 6, 2023


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Government of Canada encourages Canadians to explore careers in the skilled trades

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Government of Canada encourages Canadians to explore careers in the skilled trades

OTTAWA, ON, Sept. 8, 2023 /CNW/ – Canada needs more skilled trades workers. Demographic shifts and high retirement rates are fuelling demand and an ever-growing need to recruit and train thousands more Canadians for rewarding careers in the skilled trades.

Today, the Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Official Languages, Randy Boissonnault, announced a new awareness campaign to highlight the value of a career in the skilled trades. For the first time, a series of experiential marketing events will be featured across Canada, including: Ottawa as a first stop, Montréal, Fredericton, Saint John, Toronto and Vancouver.

This new interactive and dynamic exhibit provides an experience where individuals can learn about different skilled trades careers, find in-demand trades in their province or territory and discover the steps it takes to become a skilled trades worker. The exhibit focuses on creating an in-person and immersive experience. This weekend the experiential marketing display will be set up in Ottawa at Lansdowne Park.

In Ontario, the construction industry was the second fastest growing industry with 9.2% growth from 2019 to 2022. This industry makes up a large percentage of employment for Red Seal trades in Canada. In the Ottawa region, there are several Red Seal trades that have solid employment outlooks over the 2022–2024 period. They include:

  • cabinetmakers

  • carpenters

  • cooks

  • industrial mechanics (millwrights)

  • tower crane operators

  • gasfitters – Class A

  • gasfitters – Class B

  • refrigeration and air conditioning mechanics

  • heavy duty equipment technicians

  • industrial electricians

  • landscape horticulturists

This campaign supports the efforts of the Government of Canada’s Canadian Apprenticeship Strategy, which aims to support a trades workforce that is skilled, inclusive, certified and productive. As part of the Strategy, the Government invests nearly $1 billion annually in grants, loans, tax credits, Employment Insurance benefits during in-school training, projects, and support for the Red Seal Program.


“Skilled trades workers are the backbone of the Canadian economy. With demographic shifts and high retirement rates, Canada needs more skilled trades workers. These good-paying and rewarding careers are an integral part of several industries across the country. Our government continues to raise awareness about the great careers available to young Canadians in trades. We are building a robust and diverse skilled trades workforce now for the economy of the future.”
– Randy Boissonnault, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Official Languages

“Events like these encourage Canadian youth to discover the rewarding careers that exist in the skilled trades and technologies through interactive activities, and help them find their passion. They also allow us to raise awareness of these important and lucrative careers to our future skilled workforce.”
Shaun Thorson, Chief Executive Officer, Skills/Compétences Canada

Quick Facts

  • The Government of Canada offers direct financial support to apprentices in the Red Seal trades.

  • Supports to help employers hire new first year apprentices, and for union-led training through targeted calls for proposals, are also available. The 2023 Canadian Apprenticeship Strategy – Investment in Training Equipment call for proposals is currently open until September 21, 2023.

  • The Canadian Apprenticeship Forum estimates that, from 2022 to 2026, over 122,000 new journeypersons will be required to sustain workforce certification across Red Seal trades in Canada. Of these, more than 92,000 journeypersons will be concentrated in the top 15 national in-demand Red Seal trades which include cook, industrial electrician, painter and decorator, and welder.

  • According to BuildForce Canada, the construction industry needs to recruit 299,200 new workers over the next decade (by 2032), driven predominantly by the expected retirement of 245,100 workers (20% of the 2022 labour force).

Associated Links

Supports for the Skilled Trades and Apprenticeships

Canada Apprentice Loan –

Apprenticeship Grants –

Canadian Apprenticeship Strategy – Investments in Training Equipment – Funding program –

Budget 2022

Fall Economic Statement 2022

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SOURCE Employment and Social Development Canada



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