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Construction association plans to recruit Mexican construction workers

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by Richard Gilbert

The British Columbia Construction Association is in the final stages of planning a job fair to recruit construction workers in Mexico. The event is scheduled for early December 2007.

Skilled Labour

British Columbia Construction Association to host job fair

The British Columbia Construction Association is in the final stages of planning a job fair to recruit construction workers in Mexico early this December.

Regina Brodersen, BCCA director of human resources, said that the final dates are not determined, but the job fair will be held for one or two days on the weekend of Dec. 1-2 or Dec. 8-9.

The job fair is being held on the weekend, so that Mexican skilled trade workers, who are interested in coming to Canada, won’t have to miss work.

“We are looking at people with experience working in the US as drywall installers, roofers and carpenters,” Brodersen said.

“Some of these people may have gained this experience working in the US without a permit. The carpenters should have experience with form work or the construction of concrete buildings.”

According to Brodersen, a new federal government initiative should work in favour of carpenters, who apply to enter Canada under the Temporary Foreign Worker program.

Under a new one-year pilot program, which was announced in September by the Federal Human Resources Minister Monte Solberg, an Expedited Labour Market Opinion is available for employers in 12 specific occupations currently in high demand — including carpenters and crane operators.

A labour market opinion assesses the potential impact that the hiring of a foreign worker will have on Canada’s labour market.

“This is good news. If a company applies now it takes up to five months. With the new ELMO a company can get approval in 5 days and once a worker is identified, it will take another five days. So in total, it is possible for a company to get foreign skilled workers in two weeks time,” Brodersen said.

However, the process is most beneficial for companies that have already applied for a labour market opinion.

The BCCA is looking to attract 200 candidates to the job fair and may hire one third of these candidates.

This will depend on the skills set of the candidates and which companies decide to attend.

So far the BCCA is working with a handful of companies to share the cost of attending the job fair.

However, Brodersen said that she would like to talk to anybody who is interested in joining the group of companies that have already committed to going to Guadalajara Mexico.

Regina Brodersen can be contacted at 250 475 1077 or by e-mail at regina@bcassn.com.

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