When Member of Parliament for Surrey Centre, Randeep Sarai accompanied fellow MP Ahmed Hussen in his effort to promote a private members Bill seeking community benefits on government funded projects here at the FTI last year, he unfortunately had a prior commitment that prevented him from touring our facility at that time.
A few things have changed since that meeting was held here in our Hazardous Materials training classroom. First, MP Hussen is now the Federal Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship. That private members Bill has now been passed into law and MP Sarai managed to make it back to our training centre to see firsthand what it is we do here with regard to apprenticeship and hazardous materials abatement training.
Last week turned out to be a very good time for Mr. Sarai to visit the FTI due to the fact that we had two painting classes, a wall & ceiling installer class, a glazing class, a hazardous materials abatement course and a Supervisor Training program all running at the same time. The FTI was a beehive of activity and the Member of Parliament got to see a great display of the variety of training programs we deliver.
Perhaps the most satisfying moment of the tour was when MP Sarai addressed our Supervisor Training class (STP) and began to speak about the support the Federal Liberal Government has shown towards union training centres across Canada. He also went on to speak about two repressive pieces of legislation brought in by the previous Conservative government that the Liberals tossed out, making union organizing less restrictive. MP Sarai received a rousing and somewhat surprising round of applause from our STP trainees. The ordinarily reserved group of foremen, supervisors and contractors rose to their feet and their applause was sustained and sincere.
We are hoping that we can access some of the $50 million the Federal Liberals are making available later this year to union training facilities. MP Sarai is supportive of our desire to put some of this funding to work purchasing new equipment and technology for our ongoing training. Mr. Sarai’s assistant, Arun Gill, also spoke to us about a cluster funding initiative aimed toward training that entails an aspect of Virtual Reality training. We are very interested in this initiative as one of our wish list items is a new VR Spray Painting device.
We look forward to hosting more politicians at the FTI who share our enthusiasm for training the best trades people in the country. We are proud of our facility and the work we do here and we are gratified when others share our passion for training like our Member of Parliament Randeep Sarai.