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Dean Review Consultation Questions

Written submission to Dean review

Submission number: DR-22

Name of individual making submission: DR-22 Rolf VanderZwaag

Responses to questions in submission form


Section A - The Public Interest in this Review

1. What do you understand by public interest?

With respect to trades, public interest primarily involves protecting against possible harm to the general public and to workers. Another aspect of public interest also includes the need for the public to readily identify individuals that have awareness of certain potential hazards and possess the qualifications to deal with such hazards. A third consideration is the public need to have access to sufficient numbers of individuals with particular qualifications available to perform certain types of work.


2. Who should the College serve? Who is “the public” in the public interest and what groups make up the public?

The College must serve the broadest possible interest of society (or “the public”). The public can be broken down into three general groups for this question, and these groups will be different from one trade to another. These groups seem to be (1) citizens at large, (2) people sharing a workplace, and (3) the body of individuals in a particular trade.


3. How should the College make decisions in the public interest where different segments of the public may have opposing interests?

A clearly defined mandate for trade classification and SoP development needs to be part of the OCTAA. This definition needs to balance the interests of the three segments of the public as described above.


4. Is the College currently protecting the public interest?

It is too early in the College’s mandate to evaluate its success in this regard. It is currently acting on the OCTAA and its Regulations as written.


5. How should the College advance the public interest?

By maintaining a balanced approach. The College must develop and adhere to a clearly defined mandate that balances all aspects of the public interest. The considerations that drive that mandate include: • Those activities that represent the greatest potential hazard to any of the groups defined as “public”(see question #2) need to be in a ‘compulsory’ category. • Consumer protection considerations, which define what a member of the broad “public” should expect a particular tradesperson to be capable of doing, and prohibited from doing. • The skills involved in many trades that are necessary for many consumers, industrial and commercial endeavours, as well as economic growth. Trades need to attract individuals by providing some measure of prestige or other similar motivation for individuals to acquire the competencies associated with those trades.





Section B - Issues Related to Scopes of Practice (SoPs)

6. What impact do SoPs in regulation have on your daily work activities or on the way you conduct business? What aspects of an SoP are important to the work of your trade? Please explain.

In the current environment, the SoPs are very important to trades. They identify things such as whether a licence is required at all and what type of licence is required. For example - in my field of work - automotive (310S), truck (310T), or trailer (310J). The regulations are enforced as written, so the SoPs must be current and appropriate for safety risks.


7. Do you agree with the suggestion that trades may have core elements as well as peripheral elements?

Agree. The difference between core elements and peripheral elements may be hard to define. It may depend on the impact of the various elements on vehicle safety and performance, or other issues like reliability or emission performance. It may also depend on the frequency of the work being done. Frequently performed tasks offer more opportunity to train others and may naturally be part of a core. Other more obscure tasks may be harder to learn and may require greater restrictions.


8. What should be the key elements of an SoP? In particular, should the SoP for a trade list all of the tasks, activities or functions in which an apprentice should be trained, only those that are unique to the trade, or only those that may pose a risk of harm to the public, tradespeople or other workers on the job? Please explain.

The SoP must start with items that represent the greatest risk and those where there is no backstop. For example, the work of an electrician wiring a home is subject to inspection by ESA. ESA serves as a backstop to protect against hazards. Mechanic’s work is rarely inspected and the SoP should reflect the difference. Many common activities and knowledge can be listed in a base SoP that spans several current trades. Subsequently those items unique to a category of vehicle can be treated differently. While the risk of harm is always a primary concern, this is largely an immediate consideration for the College and relatively easy to incorporate in a SoP. Consumer protection also needs to be considered and may be more of medium term consideration. Society needs skilled workers - so attracting and motivating individuals to acquire trade skills is also very important, and this requires a much longer term view of how to group elements with SoPs. A more effective approach to SoP articulation may be to state that all work of a particular nature, or on particular vehicle types, requires the licence and then list exceptions. Rather than trying to list the vast array of work within the SoP.


9. How should a review or change in SoP be carried out?

Driven by a clearly defined mandate, a review needs to bring together trade expertise, enforcement interests, public interest, the interests of related trades, and the interests of the affected industry.


10. Can or should the existing SoP provisions support the College’s diverse functions (e.g., apprenticeship training, enforcement, classification reviews)? Please explain.

Existing SoPs cannot support these diverse functions. The SoP must remain a critical point of reference, particularly for classification reviews, but to serve all of these functions, it must be supported by linked requirements that bridge across into enforcement and training functions. The existing SoPs for commercial vehicle repair needs to be updated. They currently set both vague and in other cases arbitrary lines between work. And for example: definitions are needed for terms like re-conditioning, re-building, repairing, replacing, re-manufacturing, etc. Most of these concerns have no public safety risk associated with them, but are critical for an enforcement officer observing tasks being performed.


11. Should the entire SoP for a compulsory trade be enforceable or be subject to enforcement? Please explain.

Yes. With the provision of allowing some activities to be done by several different trades e.g.: automotive (310S), truck (310T), or trailer (310J). Given a fundamental change to the SoP model; the enforcement function could also potentially be revised. Changing an air hose on a vehicle such as a truck, trailer, car, motor home, farm tractor, forklift, etc., requires the same core ability, but current SoPs pigeon-hole this work.


12. Could the College benefit from a distinct list of compulsory activities that may pose a risk of harm to the public, tradespeople or other workers on the job? Please explain.

Yes within the confines of each trade, related trades, or a general list that applies to all trades may be appropriate. The enforcement function related to varying degrees of risk should differ. This again is dependent on the particular nature of a revised SoP mandate/model.


13. What is your understanding of what an overlap between SoPs is?

Common work that is essentially the same in terms of procedures and risk, regardless of the actual vehicle being worked on. This is important in the commercial vehicle repair trades where different types of vehicle are side-by-side in a shop.


14. Do overlaps between SoPs in regulation have an impact on your daily work or on the way you conduct business? Please explain.

Currently no. Many workplaces have no awareness of the SoP today - until enforcement enters the workplace. Overlaps can quickly become greater concerns when this awareness does occur. This should be an important issue and if changes are made to the SoP model, overlaps need to be addressed carefully.


15. Does the application of the third legal interpretation principle on overlapping SoPs pose a risk of harm to the public, tradespeople, or other workers on the job? Please explain. If so, what can and should be done about it?

The question of risk of harm requires specific examples to answer meaningfully. Allowing a non-tradesperson to perform work that is also listed in a SoP seems to make enforcement pointless. A more thoughtful and mandate-driven approach to SoP development should address this issue.





Section C - Classification or Reclassification of Trades as Compulsory or Voluntary

16. What makes a compulsory trade compulsory and what makes a voluntary trade voluntary?

As discussed above, there are various reasons. A clearly defined mandate and set of criteria needs to be developed to move away from the existing legacy approach. The determination of what is in either category should be driven by the following concerns. • Those activities that represent the greatest potential hazards need to remain in the ‘compulsory’ category. • Consumer protection considerations that define what a member of the public should expect a particular tradesperson to be capable of doing. • The skills involved in many trades that are necessary for many consumer, industrial and commercial endeavours. Trades need to attract individuals by providing some measure of prestige or other motivation for individuals to acquire the competencies associated with those trades.


17. Is the current classification of trades as either compulsory or voluntary aligned with the College’s duty to serve and protect the public interest?

Partially yes. The classifications however do not adhere to any particular mandate, since no such mandate exists. They are more a part of a former bureaucratic legacy.


18. Is it reasonable to assume that there may be elements in the SoP for a trade that are inherently hazardous or that may pose a risk of harm to the public, tradespeople, or other workers on the job?

Yes, definitely in existing iterations. This should continue to be true going forward.


19. Could compulsory certification be limited to either the core elements of a trade or those tasks, activities, or functions that may pose a risk of harm to the public, tradespeople or other workers on the job? What kind of impact would these approaches have on your daily work or on the way you conduct business?

Compulsory certification must be broader than addressing only risk of harm. As already stated, the following concerns also need to be addressed: • Consumer protection considerations that define what a member of the public should expect a particular tradesperson to be capable of doing, and prohibited from doing. • The skills involved in many trades that are necessary for many consumer, industrial and commercial endeavours. Trades need to attract individuals by providing some measure of prestige or other motivation for individuals to acquire the competencies associated with those trades.


20. Should the College continue to rely on an adjudicative review panel approach (i.e., the Ontario Labour Relations Board model) or should a different model be considered? Please explain.

I have little knowledge or involvement in this type of approach and am unable to submit any response on this particular question.


21. How should expert opinion be obtained?

In a manner similar to other judicial proceedings.


22. Are the current criteria for trade classification reviews set out in O. Reg. 458/11 consistent with the public interest? Please explain.

The criteria themselves seem to fairly appropriate. The process leading up to the application of the criteria will benefit from a revised objective model for trade classification and SoP development. Requests should require supporting rationale and information.


23. Are the criteria specific, clear and measurable enough to inform you of what data and evidence are needed to meet those criteria?

Generally yes. An objective model for trade classification and SoP development are still necessary to properly apply the criteria.


24. Are the existing criteria the right criteria?

One more should be added. Consumer protection considerations are not addressed. It may be helpful to classify a trade simply to discreetly identify it and define what a member of the public should expect a particular tradesperson to be capable of doing.





Section D - Decisions of the Ontario Labour Relations Board (OLRB)

25. Do the scopes of practice (SoPs) in regulation reflect the way in which work is actually assigned in your trade or sector?

No. The divisions between the type of vehicle, rather than the nature of the work or safety risk, are inappropriate. For example a person repairing brakes on a trailer cannot repair the identical brakes on a truck.


26. Do you agree with the notion that most jurisdictional disputes arise from peripheral elements of the trades? Please explain.

I have no experience with jurisdictional disputes.


27. What consideration should the College give, if any, to the decisions made by the OLRB in jurisdictional or work assignment disputes under the Labour Relations Act? If the College were to adopt the OLRB's decisions, what impact would that have on your trade and the way you conduct business? Please explain.

I have no experience with jurisdictional disputes.





Section E - General Response and Comments

28. Please provide additional comments below, if any.

Respondent did not provide a response to this question