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PETER KENTERLooming labour shortages in the construction industry and other sectors won be solved by just a few strategies designed to encourage adequate human resources are available.

That was the consensus of participants in an employment symposium organized by The Toronto Workforce Innovation Group (formerly the Toronto Training Board) and the Canadian Urban Institute.

have a significant opportunity to show that the right kind of training meets the right kind of people, says Toronto Mayor David Miller.

While the construction sector has been proactive in attempting to meet its own human resources needs, economic indicators continue to point to a coming shortfall.

The provincial government points to a doubling of apprentices in the system since the provincial Liberals took office.

have 120,000 apprentices in the system right now, instead of 60,000 when we took office,
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says John Milloy, Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities.

union training centres in construction are doing a great job of training apprentices, there still a huge potential shortage looming on the horizon.

However, Richard Lyall, President of builders organization RESCON,
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cautions the construction industry not to skew its vision of the future labour market based on the tide of a green building revolution.

building is simply a method of building and a series of technologies we incorporate into construction, he says.

same people who installed insulation before there was such a thing as a green building are the same people who will be installing it now.

building certainly won result in a boom relative to the size of the construction industry.

not simply talking a one to one ratio here, he says. experienced project manager may solve in a minute what it takes a newer person a week to figure out. You can replace existing work experience entirely through education.

Lyall notes that while great strides have been made in predicting labour needs, it far from a science.

outlook for construction is a little fuzzy right now, says Lyall.

infrastructure stimulus funding has provided a boost to the civil sector but it won last forever.

currently seeing activity in high rise construction based on a pent up demand for units, but we way down on low rise,
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so we not in a significant labour shortage.

we get into the next construction cycle from 2012 or 2013 to 2018 that when the chickens will come home to roost and we see an approximately 25 per cent rise in skilled labour requirements.