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Not everyone is handy. And even the handiest people out there need help from the experts. When you have home maintenance issues that are over your head, you need a licensed, proven service provider to solve your problem. Where would we be without those helpful skilled trades people who make our daily lives easier?
At the rate we're going — we may find out.
Statistics show that Canada is experiencing a severe shortage in skilled trades workers. With fewer workers entering the workforce that then number of baby boomers who are retiring, it is only going to get worse.
Why should we care?
Consider the need for gas technicians. We live in a climate that gets very cold in the winter and uncomfortably hot and humid in the summer. We need gas technicians to help us maintain our HVAC systems to provide a safe and comfortable place to protect us from the elements. But as fewer people get trained in the trades, service companies (furnace technician businesses and appliance maintenance companies, for example) are having trouble hiring qualified techs. So, what does this mean for the average homeowner out there? Longer waits and higher prices for quality work by qualified gas technicians.
What can we do?
It may seem like a problem that is out of your control, but there is more that can be done than you may think. Even if you aren't the one considering skilled trades jobs in Canada, you likely know someone who is. You may even know someone who would be perfect working in the trades, but has never thought about it before.
It's time to stop taking the trades for granted. There is often a snap judgment made in our society that devalues skilled labour. High school students are often being told the only options for post-secondary success lie in a university or college education. It is up to parents, teachers and guidance counsellors to make sure young people are aware that the career options in the trades and numerous and growing. Not only that, but the pay is great — many skilled trades workers make more than the average employee in Canada. And all you need to get your gas technician license is a high school diploma or equivalent.
Encourage a young person, or someone who is looking to make a career change to consider the trades. Working with your hands is no less satisfying or important than other work. In fact, trades people are who make our country run effectively. We need them — so stop overlooking these options!