A new agreement for key public-sector infrastructure projects in B.C. announced today promises to deliver good-paying jobs, better training and apprenticeships, and more trades opportunities for Indigenous peoples, women and youth around the province.
“British Columbians rightfully expect B.C. projects to benefit B.C. workers, families and communities. Our new Community Benefits Agreement will help deliver those benefits,” said Premier John Horgan in the government news release.
“With this agreement, we’re not just investing in roads, bridges and other infrastructure, we’re investing in good jobs and new opportunities for people who live in B.C. And with our focus on expanding apprenticeships for young British Columbians, we’re helping build B.C.’s next generation of construction workers.”
Highlights of the agreement include:
- A targeted approach to maximizing apprenticeship opportunities on major public-infrastructure projects.
- Focus on priority hiring and training of Indigenous peoples, and women.
- Co-ordinated access to existing training programs, while identifying and addressing skills gaps.
- Priority hiring for qualified individuals who live within close proximity of the projects.
- Hiring flexibility for contractors, who can request named hires.
- Wage alignment to prevailing industry rates to promote good wages for all employees.
The first projects to be delivered under the new community benefits framework are the new Pattullo Bridge, and the four-laning projects on the Trans-Canada Highway between Kamloops and Alberta. The request for qualifications (RFQ) for the Pattullo Bridge Replacement Project has been released.
Under government’s new Community Benefits Agreement, a diverse and qualified workforce will be supplied for select major public infrastructure projects through a newly created Crown corporation, BC Infrastructure Benefits Inc. (BCIB). BCIB will hire the project’s construction workers, and will work with unions and contractors to dispatch labour, as well as manage payroll and benefits.
Read the full government news release.