Thirty local heavy-duty equipment mechanics recently received Red Seal certification, Canada's highest Interprovincial Trade qualification. The examination was administered in Jamaica by the Saskatchewan Apprenticeship and Trade Certification Commission, in collaboration with Canadian-based recruiting firm, HireProDrivers and Jamaica-based Keyano College.
Red Seal certification also assists with supporting foreign workers' application for permanent residency in Canada. The 30 mechanics already have received job offers in Canada and are awaiting the completion of immigration procedures.
Once someone has obtained Red Seal in one province it is recognised across Canada and guarantees certified persons the highest pay in the particular area of qualification. Each candidate must meet the requirements of the Red Seal exam, having at least five to six years' experience.
SUPPORT FROM THE MINISTRY
The Ministry of Labour facilitated the coordination of the interviews and screening of applicants for the heavy-duty mechanics recruitment programme. "The Ministry supports the training of persons to take up job opportunities here and abroad," said spokesperson, Angella Miller-Stennett.
In September 2011, Automotives reported that jobs in Canada were available to this group of skilled workers. Then Minister of Labour Pearnel Charles said "we're just at the advertising stage. We have not reached the point where we have discussed quantity, examination and selection, Applicants will be tested to the Canadian standards and the successful candidates will be selected by the Canadian recruiters. All the tests will be done at the labour ministry's office."
However, previously Jamaicans going to Canada under the programme have had to do the Red Seal certification upon arriving in Canada.
In addition to heavy-duty mechanics, the Labour Ministry is currently seeking trailer drivers to fill vacancies in Canada. Drivers must have experience in hauling petroleum, LNG or any bulk liquid product. Information on specific requirements for these vacancies can be viewed at the Ministry's labour market information system website: www.lmis.gov.jm.