Premier Backs LNG Report Recommendations

Christy Clark calling it a ‘road map’ to making sure BC has the skilled labour force it needs to seize the opportunity.

The document is the work of government representatives, LNG proponents, organized labour, and the Haisla Nation.

The idea came about after meeting last September with representatives of organized labour.

 In Clark’s words, “this investment will lead to good jobs. As we know, good jobs build a better BC.”

 The working group met nine separate times between November and last month to formulate the report.

The 15 recommendations are as follows:

1. Develop a structure with equal representation from industry (including contractor associations), organized labour, First Nations, and governments to participate and enable the skills training and workforce planning issues leading to employment in the LNG opportunity on an ongoing basis after March 31, 2014. The structure, membership, and Terms of Reference should be established no later than July 1, 2014, in consultation with the members of the Premier’s LNG Working Group. In addition, the structure should be established in co-ordination with other LNG workforce activities already underway.

2. Begin planning and training British Columbians immediately for the LNG opportunity.

3. Training should be co-ordinated throughout B.C. and Canada to maximize the effectiveness of the existing labour pool and lead to employment.  

4. Identify and remove barriers to entry into training while supporting literacy and essential skills development to support local and B.C. work-based training and employment.

5. Increase the efficiency and effectiveness of the investment in training by leveraging successful government, union, and private training programs.

6. In conjunction with recommendation #7, industry, governments, organized labour, and First Nations should partner to conduct campaigns and career fairs in high schools, colleges and cultural centres on the LNG opportunity.

7. Promote awareness of job opportunities in B.C., including work-based training with a focus in rural, northern, and First Nations communities.

8. Establish an inventory of individuals currently in apprenticeship programs and other non-apprenticeship skilled workers seeking employment.  Include in the inventory journeypersons who are available to provide mentoring and on-the-job training to apprentices.

9. Aspire to a goal of having 25% overall of the apprenticeable trades workforce on LNG-related construction projects and whether funding for apprentices can come from industry and/or government. In addition, government should consider having a minimum number of apprentices on public infrastructure projects.

10. Review the approach used by private-sector unions with respect to apprentices and by First Nations with respect to training to determine if their approach can be improved or applied more broadly.

11. Explore and analyze projects that have used a mobile workforce. In addition, it is important to identify and resolve the barriers to worker mobility in relation to trades qualification and certification.

12. Target areas of opportunity by focusing on workers finishing construction or other projects in all areas of the province.

13. Explore best practices within the LNG sector and other competing industries with respect to the conditions necessary to attract a mobile workforce.

14. Develop a plan to support workers from other jurisdictions to stay in B.C.

15. Further refine and develop a process for the use of Temporary Foreign Workers in the context of an overall strategy that identifies the workforce needs of the LNG opportunity and immediately begins a skills training plan to develop as many British Columbian and Canadian workers as possible to meet those needs. The structure contemplated in Recommendation #1 will be seized with the responsibility to refine and develop a process for the use of Temporary Foreign Workers.