Today, the Government of Saskatchewan proclaimed new apprenticeship and trade certification legislation, broadening the Saskatchewan Apprenticeship and Trade Certification Commission’s (SATCC) designation and certification authority, and allowing the SATCC to more effectively manage its regulatory function.
The Apprenticeship and Trade Certification Act, 2019 (The Act) replaces The Apprenticeship and Trade Certification Act, 1999. The Apprenticeship and Trade Certification Regulations, 2020 and The Apprenticeship and Trade Certification Commission Regulations have been amended to align with the changes in the new Act.
The legislation will be posted to the SATCC’s website: saskapprenticeship.ca/resources/acts-regulations/.
The three substantive changes in The Act give the SATCC the authority to:
- Designate occupations and sub-trades in Saskatchewan (in addition to trades);
- Designate trades, sub-trades or occupations for “certification only”; and
- Issue stop work orders if, during on-site inspections of compulsory trades, there is no journeyperson present at the worksite.
The ability to designate occupations in Saskatchewan professionalizes skilled work. This amendment will benefit workers by providing them with a way to obtain meaningful certification in their occupation. It also benefits employers and consumers. When people certified in occupations apply for a job, the employer will know the type of training they participated in. Consumers can feel reassured, too, knowing the person doing the job has the necessary training to perform high-quality work. When it comes to designating occupations, industry will lead the way.
The amendment giving the SATCC the ability to designate trades, sub-trades or occupations for “certification only” means an additional path forward for certification, where no other pathway exists. There are trades that are designated and in high demand elsewhere in Canada, but not in Saskatchewan. This change will give Saskatchewan workers a way to certify in these trades. “Certification only” also means the SATCC could administer a certification exam without developing or delivering a corresponding training program.
The authority to issue stop work orders if, during on-site inspections of compulsory trades, there is no journeyperson present at the worksite, helps ensure the safety of apprentices, other workers and consumers. (There are five compulsory trades in Saskatchewan: Construction Electrician; Plumber; Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Mechanic; Sheet Metal Worker; and Sprinkler Fitter.)
The SATCC is working to develop the necessary processes and procedures to ensure the successful implementation of these legislative changes.