Trades NL Identifies 5 Priority Area’s to Boost Economic Recovery – Looking for O’Regan to Support Construction Workers

News Release

Trades NL Identifies 5 Priority Area’s to Boost Economic Recovery
– Looking for O’Regan to Support Construction Workers

May 25, 2020 – In a letter to Seamus O’Regan, Regional Minister for Newfoundland and Labrador and Minister of Natural Resources, Trades NL is calling for support from the Federal Government on five priority area’s and actions which will have an instant impact for economic recovery and provide assistance to displaced construction workers.

“Newfoundland and Labrador is facing unprecedented health, social and economic challenges as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, where we have seen major projects deferred, resulting in more than 35,000 jobs lost. In response to these circumstances, we are seeking leadership from the Government of Canada that will support construction activity – which has proven to be one of the greatest economic stimulators – and jobs, focusing on putting people to work immediately.”

    • Darin King, Executive Director, Trades NL

Trades NL represents 18,000 highly skilled trades people from over 250 communities all over Newfoundland and Labrador.  To assist in a successful economic recovery, Trades NL is proposing initiatives that will have an instant impact on workers and create immediate employment, as well as an investment into the province’s future with exploration and diversification.

The priority initiatives identified by Trades NL include:

  1. Financial support for displaced construction workers
    Many construction workers have been displaces as a result of Covid -19, with projects being shutdown, delayed, or cancelled. We are seeking extended Employment Insurance benefits for affected construction workers so they can apply for EI benefits based on earnings from the previous year.
  1. Stimulus’ Infrastructure Funding
    Trades NL is encouraging government to move ahead with large-scale projects that are people-centred, and focused on immediate job creation and workforce development. These provisions can be successful using a NL benefits agreement model.
  1. Development Incentives for Our Resources
    NL is experiencing a tremendous blow as a result of recent announcements affecting many major ongoing/proposed projects, and we are encouraging government to invest in/commit to development incentives for the resource industry, which will assist in getting resource projects such as White Rose, Terra Nova, Bay du Nord, Come By Chance, Kami Mine and others back into action, creating immediate employment and maximizing local benefits.
  1. Exploration Incentives for the Resource Sector
    Our resource industry has been, and continues to be, critical to the economic development of our province. Now is the time for the Federal Government to step up and assist us by developing and introducing measures to attract mineral, and oil and gas investors to our province. This is about sustaining our future, and if we do not participate in exploration we will not reap the benefits of developments.
  1. Investing in Skilled Trades Training
    It is imperative that we maintain our world-class trained skilled trades work-force, ensuring we are able to continue with the major developments currently ongoing, and those proposed. We are seeking supports and investments in training that will ensure skilled trade workers are available, trained and ready to return to work.

“We understand that these are difficult times that require difficult decisions, but there are solutions to all five of our proposed initiatives that have been used successfully in the past. However, we can-not wait any longer – we must start now – this is a time to work collaboratively by pulling Newfoundlanders and Labradorians together so that we come out of this economic devastation stronger than ever. And, it starts with a strong employment agenda, putting people and prosperity first.”

    • Darin King, Executive Director, Trades NL

Trades NL is an umbrella labour organization which promotes and coordinates the interests of 16 building and construction trades unions.

Click here to view or print letter to Minister O’Regan

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Corey Parsons

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