OHS Canada Magazine

Atlantic premiers sign agreement to enhance technical safety, labour mobility for tradespeople

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June 29, 2023
By OHS Canada

Health & Safety

New Brunswick Premier Blaine Higgs (Office of the Premier)

The premiers in Atlantic Canada have signed an agreement — finalized during their meeting on June 12, 2023 — to streamline regulations and facilitate seamless work opportunities  for regulated technical tradespeople across the region.

Under this agreement, the Atlantic Provinces will collaborate on several key initiatives to enhance labour mobility and ensure a smooth working experience for tradespeople. One of the key objectives is to align the requirements for training, certification, and licensing, enabling skilled tradespeople such as fuel technicians, power engineers, and elevator mechanics, among others, to work more efficiently and effectively throughout the region.

The signing of the agreement marks a significant milestone in eliminating barriers and creating a more conducive environment for tradespeople.

“This is a significant step towards improving labor mobility for technical trades in our region and another example of our commitment to reducing red tape and supporting workers,” said Premier Dennis King of Prince Edward Island, who also chairs the Council of Atlantic Premiers,

The agreement, set to take effect on July 1, 2023, encompasses various areas of co-operation among the Atlantic Provinces. One of the primary focuses is seeking opportunities for regulatory alignment in all aspects of technical safety.


By working together, the provinces aim to harmonize or mutually recognize safety standards where appropriate, effectively removing obstacles to operating across provincial boundaries. The timely review, assessment, and response to applications submitted by certified technical safety tradespeople from other provinces or territories will also be prioritized to promote labor mobility and support industry growth.

In addition, the Atlantic Premiers will co-ordinate efforts and share information on related issues, opportunities, and challenges. By fostering collaboration and knowledge exchange, the provinces aim to foster an environment of continuous improvement in technical safety and enhance the overall quality of services provided by tradespeople in Atlantic Canada.

While emphasizing the importance of maintaining high standards of technical safety and safeguarding public interest, the Premiers have also acknowledged the legislative authority of each Atlantic Province over technical safety. The unique needs and circumstances of local stakeholders will continue to be recognized, ensuring that regulatory bodies and professional associations uphold the highest standards of technical safety in the province where tradespeople are employed.

Premier Tim Houston of Nova Scotia emphasized the benefits of the agreement in attracting skilled workers and maintaining high technical safety standards. Premier Blaine Higgs of New Brunswick applauded the agreement as an important measure to remove barriers to labor mobility within the region. Premier Andrew Furey of Newfoundland and Labrador highlighted the agreement’s potential to meet growing market demand and support economic and community growth.

The signing of this agreement signals a united effort by the Atlantic Premiers to foster economic growth, attract skilled workers, and create a more interconnected and prosperous Atlantic Canada.

By optimizing labour mobility and enhancing technical safety, the agreement sets the stage for a thriving trades industry and reinforces the region’s commitment to reducing barriers and supporting workers’ needs.


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