Construction workers needed on P.E.I., says industry

The Construction Association of P.E.I. is concerned about an industry forecast that predicts a growing shortage of construction workers for the Island.

Skilled trade workers 'almost impossible to find,' says P.E.I.'s construction association

Sam Sanderson, general manager of the Island's construction association, says the worker shortage on P.E.I. can delay projects. (Canadian Press)

The Construction Association of P.E.I. is concerned about an industry forecast that predicts a growing shortage of construction workers for the Island.

BuildForce Canada is estimating 300 more workers will be needed in the next decade, and currently more skilled workers are retiring than being hired.

Sam Sanderson, the general manager of the Island's construction association, says there's already a shortage of workers, and work in all areas of construction are expected to increase.

Can delay projects

"Moving forward, we have some of our local contractors finding it almost impossible to find skilled people in different trade sectors presently," he said.

The worker shortage can delay projects, and add costs to bring in workers from outside the region, Sanderson said.

He thinks newcomers should be encouraged to get into trades, and recommends expanding a federally funded program that gets youth-at-risk to try out trades.

With files from Laura Chapin