Ottawa, ON — Canadians agree that the country needs more skilled trade workers, yet the majority would never pursue a skilled trade for themselves. According to a recent 3M Canada State of Science Index survey, 76 per cent of respondents said they wouldn’t want to pursue the skilled trades as a career.
“Getting Canada’s youth excited about skilled trades will be critical to ensuring a robust and healthy economy as we emerge from the impact of the global pandemic,” said Terry Bowman, manufacturing and supply chain leader at 3M Canada. The survey polled 1,000 adults, 18 years and older, across 17 countries.
In addition, the 3M Canada survey revealed that 92 per cent of respondents think there are a lot of opportunities in skilled trades. Additional findings from the survey include 91 per cent trust vocational or trade schools to give them the education needed to have a successful career, 81 per cent believe they would earn as much money in a skilled trade as they would in a career that requires a degree from a traditional university or college, and lastly, 47 per cent of Canadians who did not pursue a career in a skilled trade said that the top reason was that they had other passions they wanted to pursue as a career.
While more than three-quarters said they would never pursue a career in the trades, a recent Labour Force survey by Statistics Canada showed that in June 2022, the number of people working in construction grew by 23,000. The increase in workers recouped losses seen over the previous two months, which saw Canada post a record-high job vacancy of one million positions in March 2022. Of those one million positions in March, 81,900 were in the construction sector.
“The shortage of skilled professionals in Canada is daunting – misconceptions and lack of awareness surrounding these careers makes it difficult to fill the gaps, but it is important now more than ever that we encourage and support Ontarians pursuing these fields,” said Ian Howcroft, CEO of Skills Ontario.