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Dean Review Consultation Questions

Written submission to Dean review

Submission number: DR-25

Name of organisation making submission: DR-25 Millwright Regional Council of Ontario

Responses to questions in submission form


Section A - The Public Interest in this Review

1. What do you understand by public interest?

Our understanding of “Public Interest” would be to serve and protect the best interest of the public from Health and Safety injury and illness, protecting the public from the consequences of faulty work and the risks that faulty work can put on the public, be it physical or financial. To the protection of the risks that could be put on the environment and or the protection of the environment from a potential catastrophic event, due to faulty work, that could have an impact on the economy, that could also affect the public.


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

All people within the Province of Ontario make up the “General Public”. You can make up groups of Tradespeople, Non-Tradespersons, all of those within the confines of a construction project and those just outside and far beyond the property of which the work is taking place, yet all of the general public can be affected one way or another by a catastrophe, due to faulty work. All you have to do is look at the Bhopal gas leak at Union Carbide in India in 1984, where about 40 tonnes of deadly methyl isocyanate gas leaked into the air of the central Indian city of Bhopal, quickly killing 4,000 people. Lingering effects of the poison pushed the death toll to about 15,000 over the next few years, according to government estimates. In all, at least 500,000 people were affected, the Indian government says. Thirty years later, activists say thousands of children are born with brain damage, missing palates and twisted limbs because of their parents’ exposure to the gas or water contaminated by it.


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

The health and safety of the worker and the public should always be of paramount interest.


4. Is the College currently protecting the public interest?

Public interest can only be protected by the Regulations, Laws and Acts that are currently in place in Ontario. So, yes we believe that the College is currently protecting the public as best as it can, under todays environment.


5. How should the College advance the public interest?

One way that the College could advance the Public interest would be by making all construction trades compulsory, thus ensuring that a standard of training was achieved by all trades that work in the construction industry. The College could also advance the public interest by focusing on educating the Colleges Inspectors, ensuring that enforcement was only used when necessary and was not being used to advance one trade’s jurisdiction.





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.

There really is no impact that SoPs have on our daily work activities or in the way that we conduct our business. In reality, SoPs do not serve the purpose for apprenticeship training or serve the purpose for compliance and enforcement. The simple reason for this is that SoPs are not “Certificates of Qualification” or regulated in-school curriculum standards. SoPs give a small plain uncomplicated basic view of the trade. Our belief is that either you are under an Apprenticeship contract or you hold a “Certificate of Qualification” in the trade. That puts you in a position of being qualified or not being qualified. SoPs do not hold any weight or give enough detailed information on the actual complexity or dangers of any of the trades.


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

We agree that all trades have some “core” and “peripheral” elements to them, some trades are much more basic than others, while some trades are much more complex, made up of complicated or interrelated parts, extremely intricate, detailed and involved. Another way of looking at it would be that some trades only have to use or be educated in using a small amount of tools, while other trades have to maintain a very complex assortment of tools, to carry out the numerous functions within their trade. The distinction should not be whether the elements of a trade are “core” or “peripheral”, but whether the public can be put in a position of danger involving core and peripheral elements.


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.

We believe that the Scope of Practice should be the complete In-School Curriculum Standards within the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities (MTCU) for any trade within the Construction industry in Ontario. Otherwise the SoPs do not sufficiently detail enough information for an inspector or anyone from the public, to comprehend, grasp or understand the possible dangers.


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

We feel that a review would only complicate and bring more politics into the process, the SoPs of any trade, should be all levels of the In-School Curriculum Standards, period. For a Scope of Practice of a trade – go to their Trade Code, as in the SoP for Construction Millwrights, go to Trade Code 426A, Basic, Intermediate and Advanced levels.


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

The majority of SoPs are a very basic generalization of a trade that were put together in the 1960’s. All trades have evolved tremendously over the years, along with the majority of industry technology. This evolution has definitely changed the way trades conduct their business and the changes in training that have occurred over the years for their apprenticeship programs. Due to the fact that SoPs were so basic, next to nothing has changed in the SoPs over many decades. As SoPs exist today, there is very little in them to acknowledge apprenticeship training or the basis for compliance and enforcement.


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

We believe that only the elements that could put the tradesperson, the public and the environment in potential danger, should be enforceable or be subject to enforcement.


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.

The College and the public would definitely benefit from a distinct list of compulsory activities that may pose a risk to the public, tradespeople and other workers on the job. These should be made up of the components and situations that most put the public at risk, whether core or peripheral.


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

Our understanding of what one overlap between SoPs would be “Welding”. Almost all trades involve welding to some degree and there is also the trade of “Welder” 456A in the Industrial sector.


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

No, overlaps between SoPs in regulation do not have an impact on our daily work or the way we conduct business. We conduct our business as if our trade was compulsory and that goes along with our apprenticeship program.


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?

3. “When work is contained in the scope of practice of a compulsory trade and the scope of practice of a voluntary trade, then any person may engage in that work (even if the person is not engaging in the practice of the voluntary trade) and membership in the College is not required provided that the person is not engaged in the practice of the compulsory trade while performing the work”. Yes it very easily can pose a risk due to the fact that a voluntary trade can practice in the industry without having to take any training at all. That is a why all construction trades should be deemed compulsory, to ensure that a standard of training is achieved through In-School Curriculum Standard as mandated through the M.T.C.U. That is why SoP’s would be better served as the Regulated Standards as opposed to a few basic elements.





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?

What makes a Compulsory trade compulsory is that those in the trade must take the Regulated training as directed by the MTCU through an apprenticeship program or hold a Certificate of Qualification within that trade. A voluntary trade can practice in the industry without having to take any training what so ever and call themselves tradespersons.


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?

Absolutely not, anyone can start up a business within a voluntary trade without having any type of training at all. How can the public interest be protected in this situation when there is nothing to stop untrained tradespersons from conducting faulty work and creating potentially dangerous environments. Just watch “Holmes makes it right” on television every week to see how wrong the current situation is on the public.


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?

It is very reasonable to assume that there are many elements in the SoPs 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. The problem is that SoPs do not sufficiently serve their purpose in the context that they presently hold. No one could perceive any danger when looking at a SoP, understand any basis for apprenticeship training or understand any basis for compliance and enforcement. There is not one SoP within the industry that covers the context of the basis for apprenticeship training and the basis for compliance and enforcement, without thorough explanation in fuller detail and interpretation.


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?

The problem is where do you draw the line limiting 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. Left open, the envelope will be pushed by interpretation by those that will plead ignorant in order to best benefit themselves. You could also encounter core and peripheral elements that may pose a risk of harm to the public, how do you succeed in ensuring that the proper training is and has taken place in order to protect the public.


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.

The College should continue to rely on an adjudicative review panel approach, but should change the make up of the panel. As the panel exists today, there would be a panel of (3) made up of (1) OLRB Representative, (1) Management, (1) Labour made up of Union and non-union representation. With union and non-union representation, you will never be able to keep the politics out of a review decision. If the panel make up was changed to (3) OLRB Representatives, you would eliminate the politics from the process and have 3 very competent qualified panel members that would do due diligence.


21. How should expert opinion be obtained?

Expert opinion should come from those that actually live the industry and most importantly practice the trade that is challenging, as opposed to those that are not involved in the trade or industry and are only involved due to politics, as was quite evident in the College of Trades Ratio review process. Expert opinion should only come from those involved in the sector challenging, as opposed to those from outside of the sector.


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

Absolutely, other than the Scope of practice of the trade not sufficiently characterizing enough information of what is involved in the trade. All of the other seven points show responsibility to the public safety, environment, economic, other jurisdictions, supply and demand, attraction and retention. We believe these points make total sense and are consistent with the public interest.


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

Yes they are, the tough part is finding or searching out information that was collected over the years to back up your views, unfortunately very little data was collected or is available in the industry, but that does not mean that the views given are not substantial. We heard over and over at the “Sprinkler Fitters Compulsory Challenge” by a couple of organizations, that there was no evidence that the Compulsory Classification of a trade improved the health and safety of those working in that trade and the public who may be affected by the work. Yet in the Operating Engineers Ratio Review process they proved that statement false. “To illustrate, for the years 1969-2004. The Operating Engineers became compulsory in 1982, Crane and related fatalities expressed as a percentage of total construction fatalities dropped from 19.8% to less than 5% after the implementation of compulsory training”. That is a 75% decline in fatalities due in whole, to becoming a “Compulsory Trade”.


24. Are the existing criteria the right criteria?

Yes the existing criteria is the right criteria, it sticks to the necessary points that are in the publics best interest along with the industries best interest and also helps to control the outside politics.





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 Scope of Practice in regulation in no way reflect the ways in which work is actually assigned in our trade or sector. Assignments of work through mark ups have successfully survived for many decades in Ontario from past practice in board areas to past OLRB decisions, contractor assignment letters, along with the many trade agreements allows all trades and the OLRB to conduct their business.


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

We would agree that most jurisdictional disputes do arise from peripheral elements of the trade, in most cases these peripheral elements are being challenged by someone that lacks industry experience and wants to show their voting members that they will challenge when pressured. With all of the challenges that have happened over the years, there really are very few challenges without past OLRB decisions. However, in the ever changing industry that we work in, new equipment new to the industry is left up to interpretation, when an agreeable consensus is not met between the challenging trades on the jobsite, then that’s where the OLRB comes in.


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.

It would be very foolish not to adopt the OLRB’s decisions, as the OLRB has been the industries judge in dealing with jurisdiction involving all trades within the construction industry in Ontario since it’s inception in 1948. If the College were to adopt the OLRB’s decisions, it would not have any impact on our trade in the way we conduct our business and we do not believe that it would have any impact on the way any other trade conducts their business.





Section E - General Response and Comments

28. Please provide additional comments below, if any.

March 11, 2015 The Dean Review 77 Grenville Street 10th Floor, Suite 1002 Toronto, Ontario M5S 1B3 Professor Dean : The Millwright Regional Council of Ontario takes great pleasure and appreciation in the opportunity to facilitate a written response in reference to the Tony Dean review consultation. The Millwright Regional Council of Ontario consists of 8 locals located in Toronto, Hamilton, Sarnia, Windsor, Niagara Falls, Kingston, Sudbury and Thunder Bay. The first Millwright local Chartered in Ontario was local 2309 in Toronto in 1950. The Millwright Regional Council of Ontario, formerly the “Millwright District Council of Ontario” was the catalyst behind the evolution of the Construction Millwright Certification trade in Ontario. At the time there was no Certification of any kind for Millwrights right across the country, in 1974 the “Millwright District Council of Ontario” in collaboration with the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities developed the “Construction Millwright Trade Code 426A” Our apprenticeship program started at George Brown College in Toronto in the early 1960’s, today our Construction Millwright apprenticeship program consists of 8,000 hours of on the job training, along with (3) in school terms of Basic, Intermediate and Advanced levels that continue at George Brown College. At present we have approximately 500 indentured and probationary apprentices within the Millwright Regional Council of Ontario. The M.R.C.O. operates as if the “Construction Millwright Trade” already was a compulsory trade, by investing in the Regulated training required by the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities even though we hold voluntary trade status, it is also one of the reasons why we have one of the highest completion rates within the Construction industry. The culture within our organization is that we expect every member to hold a Certificate of Qualification as a “Construction Millwright” and we demand a commitment from every apprentice in our apprenticeship program to fully complete their apprenticeship and to challenge for their C of Q., this culture is why we continue to have such a high completion rate (93%). The Millwright Regional Council of Ontario has fully supported the creation and the existence of the College of Trades which was long overdue, we are very appreciative of the opportunity to challenge for Compulsory certification as it has been many years since any trade has had the right to challenge for compulsory status. Although we have been somewhat disappointed in a few of the growing pains that the College has gone through in its evolution. The fee structure and lack of benefits for voluntary trades has led to a feeling that we now have the “College of Compulsory Trades”, a broader inclusion of all trades would help the College to get to where it needs to go, in order to grow, strengthen, and survive. Our vision is that every trade within the construction industry be compulsory, thus ensuring that the proper training was met by all of those in the industry. One trade is no better or worse than any other trade, all trades should have to take the proper training as required by the M.T.C.U. to practice in the industry. In addition to each trade holding compulsory status, there should be a list of Trade specific compulsory elements that would be restricted to that trade only. The world is watching how Ontario leads the way with the College of Trades, now we just have to do it right and prove ourselves. Ian McIsaac Executive Secretary Treasurer Millwright Regional Council of Ontario