The federal government will be creating a new Federal Skilled Worker Program specifically for tradespeople later in the year, that is intended to help meet Canada’s shortage of skilled trades labor.
Immigration Minister Jason Kenney remarked that “we are facing huge and growing labour shortages in Canada, particularly here in the West and in Alberta” at a construction site in Calgary earlier in the month.
The current Federal Skilled Worker Program scores immigration applicants out of 100 points, with a passing score of 67. The criteria the score is based on are English/French language ability, education, work experience, age, the existence of a Canadian job offer to them, and their adaptability.
The assessment criteria have been unfavorable to skilled tradespeople, who generally score lower on language ability and education than skilled professionals, resulting in skilled tradespeople making up only three percent of those accepted under the current Federal Skilled Workers Program.
The new skilled trades immigration class will put more emphasis on practical training, as opposed to just formal education, and will favor trade workers skilled in construction, mining, transportation, manufacturing and services.