CAW Leads Drive For National Apprenticeship Program

Toronto, Ontario

February 28, 2002


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CAW Leads Drive For National Apprenticeship Program

CAW Leads Drive For National Apprenticeship Program
dated February 28, 2002

Toronto February 22, 2002
       The Canadian Auto Workers Union has played a leading role in the drive to establish a national apprenticeship program. Federal Minister of Human Resources Development Canada, Jane Stewart, acknowledged the CAW role in focusing attention on the looming shortfall in skilled trades people.

Jane Stewart
Federal Human Resources Development Canada Minister

       "This is something also that has come out loud and clearly from the work of the CAW. We need a national agenda. We need government working positively together. Not mixing it up in their own jurisdictions, you know getting in each other's way. You have to work positively together. This is too big a challenge not to have an over arching Canadian plan."

       Speaking at the CAW Skilled Trades Bargaining Conference in Toronto Stewart said action is needed.


Jane Stewart
Federal Human Resources Development Canada Minister

       "In that same ten years we have got to double the number of apprentices that are certified in this country. We cannot just turn our backs any longer. And you guys know, as I say, and in your documentation, the demographics prove that we have got to bring some real focus here."

       CAW National President Buzz Hargrove was encouraged by Stewart's comments.

Buzz Hargrove
CAW National President

       "She recognizes that our union is in the leadership of trying to establish apprenticeship and to ensure that we have a very productive manufacturing base for the future in Canada. And I think that she is listening to us and so we are hopeful that we will get some strong responses from her."

       Hargrove suggested the government use a carrot and a stick to get the provinces and business on side.


Buzz Hargrove
CAW National President

       "The carrot is if you are on side, we are going to subsidize a large part of the cost at a federal level. If you are not, we are going to put a levy on your province for other provinces who will train, so you can't pirate from one province to another.
       And business the same thing. We want to use a carrot and a stick with business. The carrot is that if you train people, if you make the financial commitment, put the resources into training people, then we are going to give you a big share of the cost of that training. For those who don't, we are going to put a levy on them to ensure that they are going to help pay for those who are doing the training."


       The CAW is continuing its fight to promote full apprenticeship programs while at the same time protecting current journey people who are being affected by the economic downturn.

CAW "Fighting Back Makes a Difference."


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