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Province announces $1 million to increase skilled trades

Funding to go to 150 additional training seats in the Saskatchewan Apprenticeship and Trade Certification Commission to boost labour force.

REGINA - The province of Saskatchewan is investing an additional $1 million to expand training at the Saskatchewan Apprenticeship and Trade Certification Commission.

The funding goes towards an additional 150 training seats at SATCC, in an effort to increase the number of skilled trades workers needed for jobs in the province.

Minister of Immigration and Career Training Jeremy Harrison made the announcement Tuesday in Regina, and he said to reporters this announcement mainly focuses on the construction side.

“We’ve seen tremendous investment going into this province, whether it be for mine construction, whether it be for agriculture value-added investment, and really what that means is that we need to have the jobs and people ready to take advantage of those jobs that are being created,” said Minister Harrison.

“Today’s announcement really was about responding to that large capital investment, making sure we have young people here in this province able to take advantage of those jobs being created, and move into the labour force.”

Harrison calls the skilled trades a "great career path" and said he tells people that the people he went to high school with who went into the skilled trades and opened their own businesses “are literally doing better than the people I went to law school with financially."

"And there is a tremendous opportunity there and it’s a fulfilling career… we want to make sure that young people consider the skilled trades as a career path and if they do they’re going to have apprenticeship seats ready to go, and matching supply to demand in the skilled trades.”

Harrison noted this announcement is in addition to the 250 seats announced in the previous budget, and he hinted at more “good news” to come in the budget speech the following day, Wednesday. 

This announcement ties in to the province’s recently-announced Labour Market Strategy, and in particular the first pillar of that strategy which is to ensure there are opportunities in place for Saskatchewan people to take advantage of the jobs available in the province through education and training options.

“This announcement today is going a long way toward training the apprentices that are ready, willing and able to go to technical training,” said SATCC CEO Jeff Ritter to reporters.

“We’ve been seeing significant growth in apprenticeship registration and this is going to be key to helping us respond to that demand.”