Jacques Nadeau Archives Le Devoir The Legault government estimates that there is a shortage of 6,500 workers in the construction industry in Quebec. He hopes to recruit between 4,000 and 5,000 through a new paid accelerated study program.
Quebec wants to repeat the success of the accelerated training offered to beneficiary attendants, but this time in the field of construction. A new paid study program lasting a few months will, he hopes, enable the training of 4,000 and 5,000 workers by next summer.
Prime Minister François Legault and three of his Ministers made the announcement with great fanfare on Monday, on the construction site of a secondary school not far from the former Quebec zoo. “We’re working on bringing more people to you! » said the Prime Minister to the workers of the EBC firm present at the press conference.
A new professional education certificate will be offered for five construction trades: carpenter, tinsmith, refrigeration engineer, excavator operator and heavy equipment operator. Recruits have until December 15 to sign up for this new program, for which they will be paid $750 per week.
The Legault government estimates that the construction industry in Quebec is missing 6,500 workers. He hopes to recruit between 4,000 and 5,000 thanks to this initiative, which is expected to cost the public treasury $300 million.
Construction unions skeptical
Welcomed by the manufacturers, the announcement was however received with skepticism by the unions. “We are going to cannibalize all the other professions with this,” lamented the general director of FTQ-Construction, Éric Boisjoli.
The Quebec Construction Association does not share this opinion. Its spokesperson Guillaume Houle doubts that workers currently on construction sites will abandon a salary of $40 per hour for the $25 per hour of training. “We think it will bring a different clientele that we are not currently targeting. »
Lasting 500 to 700 hours, the new program is approximately three times less expensive than that of a normal professional studies diploma in construction.
And To those who fear that these new graduates are underqualified, the Minister of Labor, Jean Boulet, noted that 89% of people who enter the five professions concerned are without training.
The new program must be deployed throughout Quebec, but some of the training will not be offered everywhere. That of tinsmithing, for example, will be offered in 16 school service centers, but none of them is located in Gaspésie or Abitibi-Témiscamingue. The same goes for refrigeration training, which will not be given in Outaouais or Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean.