Minister opens home show with announcement on trades

James
James McLeod
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New program will give young people a taste for skilled trades

The St. John's 2010 Home Show kicked off Thursday night with upbeat talk and excited presenters proving the housing industry is strong in the metro area.

Home Show chairman Denis Galway said there was more excitement in 2010 that most years.

"We usually (spend) the last few weeks trying to sell all our booths; I think we were sold out way back in the end of February," he said. "We were totally blown away."

Gerry Carew, the director of digital products and operations for Transcontinental Newfoundland and Labrador is seen here holding an Apple iPad showcasing a full issue of The Telegram. "The Press Reader iPhone app has proven to be popular and we expect the

The St. John's 2010 Home Show kicked off Thursday night with upbeat talk and excited presenters proving the housing industry is strong in the metro area.

Home Show chairman Denis Galway said there was more excitement in 2010 that most years.

"We usually (spend) the last few weeks trying to sell all our booths; I think we were sold out way back in the end of February," he said. "We were totally blown away."

Human Resources, Labour and Employment Minister Susan Sullivan was on hand to open the show, announcing details of the government's "Try the Trades" program aimed at getting more young people into skilled trades.

The idea for the program came from the Canadian Home Builders' Association of Eastern Newfoundland, which has been organizing the Home Show for the past 17 years.

The government is putting $2.5 million over three years into the program which lets people ages 18-39 try a skilled trade for two weeks.

After a few days of classroom training - mostly on health and safety issues - the 400 participants will spend time with residential builders to see what the job it really about.

Sullivan said it's a good program for young people working other jobs who aren't sure if a trade is a good move for them.

"(Participants) may take two weeks vacation time off from their job," Sullivan said. "It's a stepping stone.

"We will pay a thousand dollar honorarium because many of our young people between the ages of 18 and 39 may already be out there working."

If they choose to step from Try the Trades into a training program, the province will kick in an extra $2,000 to the student.

Sullivan said that the province is still facing labour shortages, and Galway said that will only get worse as older workers retire.

"We're trying to target that younger person to get in and really start a new generation of skilled trade workers," Galway said. "Sometimes it's not a real fancy thing for young people to do, but we get them involved. This program introduces them to it."

Galway said there aren't any signs on the horizon the housing market will be slowing down any time soon.

"The market appears to be extremely robust here for the next 12 months. Interest rates have gone up a little bit, but we think there's enough momentum to carry us through certainly all of this year," he said. "It's an exciting time to be a home builder; it's an exciting time to be part of the association and the Home Show."

jmcleod@thetelegram.com

Organizations: Canadian Home Builders, Association of Eastern Newfoundland

Geographic location: St. John's

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Recent comments

  • John Smith
    July 02, 2010 - 13:34

    Perhaps Joe, there are lots of electricians out there with 10 or 15 years of experience still looking for work. Of course they are going to hire those first. Maybe your son will have to leave the province to get experience. I hear a lot of new electricians complaining, perhaps they should have checked with the local union before taking this trade.

  • Joe
    July 02, 2010 - 13:20

    Of course there are lots of ones with experience still looking for work. That is part of my point. The Government shouldn't be encouraging so many to go into the trades if there is no work for even the experienced. He went into a trade because that was supposed to be the best for the future. There may well be a job shortage in the future but there will be no more Journeymen if the apprentices can't get jobs. You can't expect young men and women to leave here and work away and create lives and families in other provinces and then drop that life because a job is finally available here. It is too late then.

  • Joe
    July 02, 2010 - 13:10

    Sounds good on paper HOWEVER what about the dozens and dozens of young people who have already completed their trade and can't find work. My son did Electrical at CNA in Seal Cove. Almost two years and many many resumes and job ads later still nothing. He has been working at a number of jobs continuously but nothing in Electrical. The program the Government had a while ago about hiring apprentices was nothing but a farce. He applied to all the ones in Electrical between St. John's and Grand Falls - Windsor and never even got an interview. I guess that is what happens when no one in the family is the friend of a Minister of the Government (or whatever the criteria was to get an interview).

  • Employed
    July 02, 2010 - 13:08

    Joe, tell him to get in line. I have 15 years in my field and more paper behind it then you can shake a stick at. Wanna know how long it has taken me to find employment in this province? Two full years, and I still need to relocate over 700kms to do so.

    Do not fall for the hype. If he wants to work, tell him to save a few bucks to live in Alberta for three months and apply locally. The fly in fly out LOA options are gone. Remind him that he will NOT see the wages we were paid five years ago. I am going to be at par with what I made five years ago in Alberta just to stay in this province.

    I guess the joke was on those that fell for the training programs. The training centres made a bundle, the students carry the debt.

  • John Smith
    July 01, 2010 - 20:23

    Perhaps Joe, there are lots of electricians out there with 10 or 15 years of experience still looking for work. Of course they are going to hire those first. Maybe your son will have to leave the province to get experience. I hear a lot of new electricians complaining, perhaps they should have checked with the local union before taking this trade.

  • Joe
    July 01, 2010 - 20:03

    Of course there are lots of ones with experience still looking for work. That is part of my point. The Government shouldn't be encouraging so many to go into the trades if there is no work for even the experienced. He went into a trade because that was supposed to be the best for the future. There may well be a job shortage in the future but there will be no more Journeymen if the apprentices can't get jobs. You can't expect young men and women to leave here and work away and create lives and families in other provinces and then drop that life because a job is finally available here. It is too late then.

  • Joe
    July 01, 2010 - 19:46

    Sounds good on paper HOWEVER what about the dozens and dozens of young people who have already completed their trade and can't find work. My son did Electrical at CNA in Seal Cove. Almost two years and many many resumes and job ads later still nothing. He has been working at a number of jobs continuously but nothing in Electrical. The program the Government had a while ago about hiring apprentices was nothing but a farce. He applied to all the ones in Electrical between St. John's and Grand Falls - Windsor and never even got an interview. I guess that is what happens when no one in the family is the friend of a Minister of the Government (or whatever the criteria was to get an interview).

  • Employed
    July 01, 2010 - 19:43

    Joe, tell him to get in line. I have 15 years in my field and more paper behind it then you can shake a stick at. Wanna know how long it has taken me to find employment in this province? Two full years, and I still need to relocate over 700kms to do so.

    Do not fall for the hype. If he wants to work, tell him to save a few bucks to live in Alberta for three months and apply locally. The fly in fly out LOA options are gone. Remind him that he will NOT see the wages we were paid five years ago. I am going to be at par with what I made five years ago in Alberta just to stay in this province.

    I guess the joke was on those that fell for the training programs. The training centres made a bundle, the students carry the debt.