Ontario trades get own regulatory college
Chris So/The Toronto Star Ron Johnson, chair of the board of directors at the new Ontario College of Trades, stands in the main training hall where students will learn drywalling. The training facility is run with the input of unions and contractors.
They’re the people who make a living at Ontario’s 157 skilled trades: carpenters and plumbers and hairdressers and chefs and the folks who run the construction cranes that are changing Toronto’s skyline.
And Ontario is the first place in North America — maybe beyond — to give them their own fancy regulatory college so they can govern and police their own, just like doctors and teachers and lawyers do.
But even before it opens in January 2013, the Ontario College of Trades has drawn fire from some workers who call its coming fees nothing short of a tax on trades. College officials argue the trades need an independent body to serve as quarterback in tackling Ontario’s urgent skills shortage.
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