A Message from Canada’s Building Trades Union in Support of Bill C-275

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CANADA’S BUILDING TRADES UNION SUPPORT NDP PRIVATE MEMBER’S BILL TO IMPLEMENT A SKILLED TRADES WORKFORCE MOBILITY PROGRAM

Private Member’s Bill provides tax fairness for Skilled Trades Workers

March 12, 2021 – Today, Canada’s Building Trades Unions joined Member of Parliament Scott Duvall (Hamilton Mountain) and Member of Parliament Alexandre Boulerice (Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie), as they announced the tabling of Private Member’s’ Bill C-275 An Act to Amend the Income Tax Act designed to improve workforce mobility for the skilled trades sector. 
 
Flexibility and mobility are common requirements of the construction workforce; employment ends when projects are complete, and construction workers often find the next available job is in another region or even another province. Workers often leave their homes and families to take on temporary contracts elsewhere. However, if their employer is not covering the costs of travel or accommodations, the financial burden on an employee may deter them from taking that job and potentially leave them reliant on government supports like Employment Insurance. 
 
The CBTU recently commissioned a report estimating the financial projections of implementing a Skilled Trades Workforce Mobility Tax Deduction. The report, conducted by Hendry Warren, indicated that on average, it costs a construction worker over $4,000 to temporarily relocate for work.  This is one of the largest barriers to construction worker mobility. It found the Federal Government will save $347 million per year by implementing such a tax deduction, putting more Canadians to work, reducing EI payments, and increased tax revenues. Additionally, the average worker will save $2,532 a year in temporary relocation efforts. The full report, including regional breakdowns, is available here.
 
Bill C-275 An Act to Amend the Income Tax Act will allow tradespeople and indentured apprentices to deduct from their income any travel expenses they have incurred in order to secure and maintain employment in a construction activity at a job site that is located at least 80 kilometres away from their ordinary place of residence.  
 
“Canada needs a Skilled Trades Workforce Mobility program incorporated into our tax system. Salespeople, professionals and others in the construction and maintenance industries can deduct from income the cost of their travel, meals, accommodations, while the same option is denied to skilled workers. This is an unfair tax consequence. Today, we were proud to join Members of Parliament, Scott Duvall and Alexandre Boulerice to stand up for fairness for Canadian skilled trades workers,” said Sean Strickland, Executive Director, Canada’s Building Trades Unions. “Passage of the provisions of this bill will allow construction workers to travel to where the work is, increasing job opportunities and meeting labour market demands – putting Canadians to work.” 
 
“I thank CBTU not only for their support for my bill, but for their tireless efforts and advocacy on this important matter over several decades.” said the sponsoring MP, Scott Duvall. “I am hopeful that with the tabling of my bill, the promotion by CBTU with the hundreds of thousands of workers they represent; and given that all voting members of the NDP, Liberal, Bloc, Green and Independents voted in favour of this legislation in a prior Parliament, that we will finally see this solution adopted by government. Achieving tax fairness to those working hard in the construction and building trades and improved labour mobility in the industry is long overdue. It’s time to get this done.”
 
“This inequity needs to be corrected now. It’s been going on for far too long,” said Alexandre Boulerice, Member of Parliament for Rosemont-La Petite-Patrie and Deputy Leader of the NDP. “It is unacceptable that these people be penalized by the nature of their work that forces them to move constantly. Our fiscal policy must take this particular situation into account and it is all the more urgent to do so in a context of economic and health crisis.”
 
CBTU recognizes that MP Duvall’s placement in the Order of Precedence in having this bill debated Bill C-275 is unlikely to come to a vote in this session of Parliament. Therefore, Canada’s Building Trades Unions are asking the Government of Canada to undertake implementation of the provisions of this private Member’s bill.
 
“COVID-19 has increased the strain on the economy including decreasing work opportunities for skilled trades workers in many areas. The Government of Canada has a responsibility to ensure a system of tax fairness is in place for Canadians who belong to a mobile workforce and who may work for more than one employer during a tax year. Passing this private Member’s bill will accomplish this, and level the playing field for all skilled trades workers,” said Strickland.
 
LES SYNDICATS DES MÉTIERS DE LA CONSTRUCTION DU CANADA APPUIENT LE PROJET DE LOI ÉMANANT D’UN DÉPUTÉ DU NPD VISANT À METTRE EN ŒUVRE UN PROGRAMME DE MOBILITÉ DES TRAVAILLEURS ET TRAVAILLEUSES DE MÉTIERS SPÉCIALISÉS

Le Projet de loi émanant d’un député propose l’équité fiscale pour les travailleurs et travailleuses de métiers 

 Le 12 mars 2021 – Aujourd’hui, les Syndicats des métiers de la construction du Canada se sont joints aux députés de Hamilton Mountain, Scott Duvall, et de Rosemont‑La Petite‑Patrie, Alexandre Boulerice, à l’occasion de l’annonce du Projet de loi émanant d’un député C-275 Loi modifiant la Loi de l’impôt sur le revenu visant à améliorer la mobilité dans le secteur des métiers spécialisés
 
La main‑d’œuvre des métiers de la construction doit souvent se montrer flexible et mobile; les emplois se terminent à la fin des projets, et les travailleurs et travailleuses se trouvent souvent un nouvel emploi dans une autre région et même dans une autre province. Ils doivent souvent quitter leur foyer et leur famille pour accepter des contrats temporaires ailleurs. Cependant, si l’employeur n’assume pas les coûts de déplacement et d’hébergement, le fardeau financier qui incombe à l’employé(e) peut le ou la dissuader d’accepter le travail qui n’a alors comme autre choix que de compter sur l’aide gouvernementale, comme l’assurance‑emploi.
 
Les SMCC ont récemment commandé une estimation des prévisions financières au regard de la mise en œuvre d’une déduction fiscale au titre de la mobilité. Selon une étude récente, il en coûte en moyenne plus de 4 000 $ à un travailleur ou une travailleuse pour se relocaliser temporairement pour pouvoir travailler. Cette réalité est l’un des plus gros freins à la mobilité des travailleurs et travailleuses de la construction. Dans son rapport qu’il a dirigé, Hendry Warren avance qu’en offrant une telle déduction, le gouvernement fédéral pourrait épargner 347 millions de dollars par année grâce à la hausse des impôts sur le revenu et la réduction des prestations d’assurance ‑emploi. De plus, le travailleur moyen épargnerait 2 532 $ par année au titre de ses relocalisations temporaires. Vous trouverez la version intégrale du rapport montrant les ventilations par région ici, en anglais.
 
Le Projet de loi émanant d’un député C-275 Loi modifiant la Loi de l’impôt sur le revenu permettra aux gens de métier et aux apprenti(e)s sous contrat de déduire de leur revenu les dépenses de transport engagées pour obtenir et conserver un emploi dans une activité de construction sur un chantier situé à au moins 80 kilomètres de leur lieu de résidence habituel.  
 
 « Le Canada doit se doter d’un programme de mobilité de la main-d’œuvre qualifiée intégré à son régime fiscal. Le personnel de vente, les professionnels et les travailleurs des industries de la construction et de l’entretien peuvent déduire de leur revenu leurs frais de déplacement, de repas et d’hébergement alors que les travailleurs qualifiés n’ont pas droit à ces déductions. C’est une réalité fiscale inéquitable. Aujourd’hui, nous sommes fiers de joindre notre voix à celle des députés Scott Duvall et Alexandre Boulerice qui revendiquent l’équité pour les travailleurs et travailleuses de métiers spécialisés du Canada », a affirmé Sean Strickland, directeur exécutif des Syndicats des métiers de la construction du Canada, ajoutant que (trad.) « l’adoption des dispositions de ce projet de loi permettra aux travailleurs et travailleuses de la construction de se rendre là où il y a du travail, ce qui augmentera les possibilités d’emploi, répondra aux demandes du marché du travail et donnera du travail aux Canadiens. »
 
 « Je remercie les Syndicats des métiers de la construction du Canada de non seulement soutenir mon projet de loi aujourd’hui, mais également pour les efforts qu’ils ont déployés pour faire avancer cette question importante », de dire le député Scott Duvall qui a présenté le projet de loi. Avec le dépôt de ce projet de loi, la promotion des Syndicats aux côtés des centaines de milliers de travailleurs et travailleuses qu’ils représentent et considérant que tous les députés ayant droit de vote du NPD, du Parti libéral, du Bloc québécois, du Parti vert et les indépendants ont voté en faveur de cette loi au cours d’une législature précédente, j’espère que le gouvernement adoptera finalement cette solution. Il est grand temps que les personnes qui travaillent fort dans le secteur de la construction et des métiers spécialisés aient droit à un traitement fiscal équitable et que l’industrie bénéficie d’une plus grande mobilité de sa main‑d’œuvre. »
 
« On doit corriger cette iniquité dès maintenant. Ça fait déjà beaucoup trop longtemps que ça dure, » lance Alexandre Boulerice, député de Rosemont-La Petite-Patrie et chef adjoint du NPD. « C’est inacceptable que ces gens soient pénalisés par la nature de leur travail qui les force à se déplacer constamment. Notre politique fiscale doit tenir compte de cette situation particulière et c’est d’autant plus urgent de le faire dans un contexte de crise économique et sanitaire. »
 
Les Syndicats sont conscients qu’à cause de la place qu’occupe le député Duvall dans l’ordre de priorité pour débattre de ce projet de loi C‑275, il est peu probable qu’un vote soit pris au cours de la présente session parlementaire. Par conséquent, les Syndicats des métiers de la construction du Canada demandent au gouvernement du Canada d’entreprendre la mise en œuvre des dispositions du projet de loi émanant d’un député.
 
 « LA COVID-19 a exercé une pression supplémentaire sur l’économie, notamment en faisant diminuer les possibilités d’emploi pour les gens de métiers spécialisés dans de nombreux domaines. Le gouvernement du Canada se doit de mettre en place un régime fiscal équitable pour les Canadiens et les Canadiennes qui appartiennent à une main‑d’œuvre mobile et qui sont appelé(e)s à travailler pour plus d’un employeur au cours d’une même année fiscale. L’adoption de ce projet de loi émanant d’un député serait le moyen d’y arriver en établissant des règles uniformes pour tous les gens de métiers spécialisés », de conclure monsieur Strickland. 
 

FTI BC training during the pandemic featured in Glass Canada Magazine

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COVID-19 changed the way that students were able to interact with their learning environment, and the ways in which educators were able to effectively teach our next generation of tradespeople. 

To highlight the strategies that the FTI BC implemented to overcome some of these challenges, Glass Canada Magazine has written a story on apprenticeship training during the pandemic across Canada.  

The FTI BC is featured prominently in the article, and we are proud to say that Tyler Magnison, son of Local 1527 representative Marv Magnison, is on the cover.  Tyler was in the most recent Level 3 Glazing class. 

Please take a moment to read the article “Training at a Distance” in the February 2021 edition found here https://www.glasscanadamag.com/digital-edition/

Drexel documentary focuses on educating students on the influence of construction on the built environment and how the work we do shapes communities

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Drexel University of Construction, based out of Philadelphia, has put together a documentary about the Architectural Glass and Metal Technician Certification (AGMT) and North America Contractor Certification (NACC).

This is something our Union has been working on in partnership with Contractors, Engineers, Client Owners, Architects, Suppliers, Fabricators and Insurance Providers in an effort to bring North America-wide standards to the Glazing industry.  Glazier Certification (AGMT) goes beyond the Red Seal Certification that we have already in Canada, as the individual has to perform a written and a hands-on exam as part of proving competency at the Craft.

Additionally, Glazing Contractors interested in NACC Certification have to go through a rigorous audit of all processes of their business operations in order to achieve accreditation.  Please take a minute to watch The Quest for Quality: A Certified Solution, and see how much time and effort goes into maintaining quality standards, integrity, and safety while accommodating construction project logistics.

https://1513041.mediaspace.kaltura.com/media/The+Quest+for+QualityA+A+Certified+Solution/1_jrwatk9i

Video Description: The Quest for Quality addresses the challenge of how to achieve the quality expected by all parties within a construction project.  With the Glass industry rising in importance to the architectural designs of the 21st century, an entire segment of our industry is determining just how to address the challenge of attaining the highest levels of quality while still navigating the multiple challenges of schedule, cost and safety faced every day on construction projects.  The video was a collaboration between Drexel and AGI and the second in a series of documentaries developed to educate students about the influence of construction on the built environment and how the work we do shapes communities.  Approx 33mins.

Join us for a promising career!

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This fun video was created for National Apprenticeship Week and features our President and Director of Training, Paddy Byrne, who wants YOU to JOIN US and EARN WHILE YOU LEARN. 

Apprentices who study at the Finishing Trades Institute of BC are working while they are training and can graduate with zero debt. Along with health and welfare benefits, apprentices will learn skills necessary for personal and professional success while building their pension for retirement.

Are you or someone you know ready to start your career with the Finishing Trades?  Contact us today.  We have apprenticeship classes starting soon!

(604) 580-3112

CIRP Mental Health Webinars during COVID-19

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In this time of uncertainty when people’s anxieties are high, the Construction Industry Rehab Plan (CIRP) is here to help. CIRP is running weekly live webinars on a number of different topics to support the mental wellbeing of Building Trades members and their families. Please contact CIRP to register for the live webinars. If you are unable to attend the live event, you can still register and watch at a later time.

CIRP offers a wide array of services to meet the mental health and addiction care needs of all DC 38 and Building Trades members and their families. If you are struggling with mental health or addiction please visit www.constructionrehabplan.com or call 1-888-521-8611 or 604-521-8611

COVID-19 UPDATE

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Due to the ongoing COVID-19 Pandemic, all apprenticeship and journeyperson upgrading classes are postponed until further notice.

Please check back from time to time and we will try to provide further updates as the situation unfolds. We are still here to provide our members and contractors with required Health and Safety certifications as the need arises.

Please be assured that we will be taking every precaution to ensure the safety of our students, instructors and staff during any training that we are delivering at this time.

All recommendations of the Provincial Health Office and the BC Centre for Disease Control, will be strictly adhered to in order to create the safest training environment possible.

We all look forward to things returning to normal but in the meantime, we encourage everyone to follow the advice of our Provincial Health Officer and Government officials, as we all work toward stemming the advance of this virus and ensuring the health and safety of everyone in our community.

FTI BC and IUPAT DC 38 championing change in workplace culture with Be More Than A Bystander Training

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IUPAT DC38 Local 163 Rep Kevin Weston and President & Director of Training Paddy Byrne presented the Be More Than A Bystander training to the Level 1 and 2 Painting & Decorating class at the FTI BC on Friday, January 31.

This training is essential to creating an inclusive workspace free from gender-based violence and harassment and our team are proud to be a part of moving forward together.