No special advisor yet for OCOT compulsory certification review

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Ottawa Construction News staff writer

The provincial government still hasn’t decided on who will be the special advisor to review the Ontario College of Trades (OCOT) compulsory certification processes.

“We’re still determining how we can most effectively fulfill our platform commitment to move forward with the special advisor,” said Zak Paget, a spokeperson for the Ministry of Trades, Colleges and Education.  “No decisions have been made regrding the appointment.”

In the election campaign, Premier Kathleen Wynne announced the review and decision to “pause” OCOT’s process to certify general carpentry and other trades as compulsory.

The provincial government has put a “pause” on the Ontario College of Trade’s (OCOT) process to certify general carpentry and other trades as compulsory, as it prepares to appoint a special advisor to review its processes.

Zak Paget, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Trades, Colleges and Education, which oversees the OCOT, said the decision on who the advisor will be will be made in the “near future.”

Premier Kathleen Wynne announced the review during the election campaign, observing in Sudbury comments reported by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation that “It’s a very new entity.”
“Figuring out whether the scope of its authority is the right scope, and in the interim, putting a moratorium on any more compulsory trades being identified while we do that review – that’s the responsible thing to do,” she was quoted as saying.

Now that the Liberals have a solid majority, of course, there is nothing stopping Wynne and her cabinet in moving forward with the campaign platform promises.

The Carpenters Union has been seeking compulsory certification, but there are concerns – esepcially among members of the labourers’ union – about scope-of-work conflicts, in determining whether tasks that have been performed by labourers would be deemed “carpentry” and thus restricted to carpenters.

Of course, non-union contractors continue to voice objections to the compulsory certificaiton process and the even the OCOT’s existence; however that doesn’t appear to be at risk with the Liberal majority government.

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