CLR Connector Message from the CLR President
Welcome to the November edition of the CLR CONNECTOR.
In this publication, we are glad to announce our most recent initiative – the CLR’s Speaker Series. We envision this to be a discussion forum for our members, where we will facilitate industry-relevant conversations. The topics will vary, but the focus will always remain on what you, our members, find essential for our industry, and your company to discuss. In the CLR NEWS section, you will find detailed information on the first episode of our speaker series – we hope you will find it interesting and relevant and will register and attend.
As usual, we want to offer you a variety of topics to explore, with some being recurring themes, involving some of the most critical and challenging issues faced by the construction industry. Among those – mental health and substance use, diversity and inclusion in the trades, and labour market trends in our Province.
The latter has recently become a topic of our periodic communications to our membership. As such I would like to take a moment and briefly summarize key points of the Labour Market Study project, initiated by the CLR, but with strong support from the unions represented by BCBT and the AIRCC, colleges, the Province of B.C. and the Government of Canada, and conducted by MNP.
As previously stated in our communications to you on this key research initiative, the first and foremost reason for initiating this project was us hearing consistent and urgent feedback from our members on the importance of addressing labour supply and demand issues in our Province. This need is strongly supported by the official statistical data from April 2021 Labour Force Survey data that showed construction had the second-largest cumulative decrease in employment out of any industry in British Columbia during the first fifteen months of the pandemic. The sector lost 46,000 jobs between February and March 2020, and only 14,700 of these returned between April 2020 and April 2021. It is unclear how many of the workers who lost their jobs remain available for construction work or what the current workforce’s skills and demographics are. New research is needed to profile the BC construction sector and determine the current and future supply and demand for labour.
At the same time, the demand for construction and trades labour is likely to increase as a result of increased investment in capital projects and infrastructure.
One of the primary goals of the Labour Market Survey is to understand the composition of the unionized construction sector in BC as it recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic, including a labour market forecast for supply and demand. This labour market research will then be used to develop a comprehensive human resources strategy that supports industry and organized labour to meet demand across all construction trades. The survey findings will allow for real market data-driven strategies to be developed that will benefit multiple stakeholders, including the industry, unions, colleges, and government.
This study is your chance to become actively engaged in decision-making around one of the most significant and concerning challenges our industry is facing.
We can not stress enough the critical importance of your participation in the study. We want to say thank you to all of you who have already completed the survey and participated in the interview with the MNP representative.
If you haven’t done so yet, please follow the link to complete your questionnaire today, or kindly respond to the invitation to conduct your telephone interview if you received one.
We sincerely appreciate your cooperation on this strategic initiative that is critically important to the construction industry in B.C.
We hope you will enjoy the November CONNECTOR. As always, we look forward to hearing from you. If you have any questions, comments or ideas, please contact Maria, Marketing and Communications: [email protected], 604-328-0220.
Ken McCormack, President and CEO