Our COVID-rebound honeymoon continues, but we can’t lose sight of ongoing challenges: Canadian Chamber of Commerce

Small Business Canada

(OTTAWA) – September 10, 2021 – The Canadian Chamber of Commerce’s Senior Director of Workforce Strategies and Inclusive Growth, Leah Nord, issued the following statement regarding today’s Labour Force Survey numbers:

“This month’s labour force survey continues the trend we saw in July of an economy enjoying the first rays of sunshine as businesses reopen after an incredibly dark number of months. However, tempting as it is to sit back and bask in what feels like an economic honeymoon, we cannot lose sight of the challenges that existed before reopening, and continue to persist.

It comes as no surprise that despite an upward trend in job numbers, we are also seeing continued labour shortages. This is being driven by the persistent mismatch between the skills employers need versus what the labour force can offer, and the decision of many Canadians to walk away from the hardest-hit sectors.

If Canada wants stable economic growth, we need to make sure we’re creating opportunities for a post-pandemic workforce.

To build a modern, productive, and inclusive workforce, we need to:

  • Ensure better communication and collaboration among governments, employers and educational institutions;
  • Collect comprehensive forward-looking data on labour market needs to inform education policy (including upskilling and reskilling) and improve the navigation of existing education programs and immigration policies;
  • Modernize the Temporary Foreign Worker program and implement a Trusted Employers Program; and
  • Create flexible, accessible, navigable upskilling and reskilling options to develop a culture of lifelong learning. This will help build resilient employees and businesses alike, reduce risks for all groups and create a more diverse workforce. 

Economic recovery was never going to happen overnight, but basking in the glow of business re-openings isn’t a strategy. We hope that Canada’s next government will do what it takes to shore up our workforce and bring it into the 21st century.”

To see all of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce’s recommendations for Canada’s next Parliament, click here.

About the Canadian Chamber of Commerce – Because Business Matters

The Canadian Chamber of Commerce helps build the businesses that support our families, our communities and our country. We do this by influencing government policy, by providing essential business services and by connecting businesses to information they can use, to opportunities for growth and to a network of local chambers, businesses, decision-makers and peers from across the country, in every sector of the economy and at all levels of government, as well as internationally. We are unapologetic in our support for business and the vital role it plays in building and sustaining our great nation.

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