The fourth set of questions the Tribune asked the candidates running in the provincial election is about their stance on health care, environment, fisheries and jobs:
How should government deal with the shortage of skilled workers in the resource industry sector? What is your position on the current temporary foreign worker program?
Answers are as follows:
Donna Barnett, Liberal Party, Cariboo-Chilcotin
Deal with the shortage of skilled workers.
Think outside the existing trades and training mandate. Start trades and training for those students at an earlier age who will never go on to university.
A trade without a Grade 12 certificate would go a long way to training our young people who then at a younger age have a career with a proper salary.
Those who have been in the workforce for years (such as a mechanic) but do not have a ticket – give them the tests necessary or challenge the requirements.
Those who are in this situation and do not have Grade 12, but have the work knowledge and ethics should be given the opportunity,
Foreign temporary works – my position: Should be court of last resort, this is a federal program and needs or is under review.
Charlie Wyse, New Democratic Party, Cariboo-Chilcotin
New Democrats will work to address the issue of people without jobs and jobs without people by lowering the barriers to post-secondary education and trades training with a $100 million student grant program.
New Democrats will also increase the number of apprenticeships, work with unions and industry to improve completion rates and invest in modern training equipment in local colleges, universities and technical institutions.
British Columbians need to have the opportunity to apply for jobs before they are offered to temporary foreign workers.
There is some evidence that loopholes in the program and the Liberals’ failure to invest in skills training have resulted in British Columbians losing out on good jobs. We also need to ensure that workers who come here have their rights protected and are not exploited.
Dustin Price, Green Party, Cariboo-Chilcotin
To increase the skilled workforce in B.C., we would need to allocate more money to universities and technical schools to create the spaces needed.
We would encourage the industry to help create opportunities through internships and programs that would help them train new employees to fill gaps in the workforce.
Gary Young, Independent, Cariboo-Chilcotin
Skill shortages in resource industries have been evident for many years.
Note the ads for the oil patch in our papers for years.
While we talk constantly about “skills training” we don’t have many facts on what skills, where, when, or prospective length of a job.
When we have this information we can move forward with any investment possibilities.
The current TF Worker programs seem to be a tactic of large companies rather than a fact of the workplace.
Canadian jobs should go to Canadians first.