Support for the Canadian Trucking Alliance’s call for mandatory entry level training for truck drivers in Canada continues to expand.
Canada is currently experiencing a chronic professional truck driver shortage. According to the Conference Board of Canada, the industry could see a shortage of 25,000 to 33,000 for-hire truck drivers by 2020, disrupting not only the trucking industry, but the Canadian economy and ultimately affecting the well-being of consumers as well.
With $17 billion in GDP directly tied to the for-hire trucking industry and the indirect impact being far greater, there’s little question a driver shortage of this size is a threat to the health and competitiveness of the Canadian economy and this issue is something we as a nation should start thinking about.
The Canadian Trucking Alliance recently created a Blue Ribbon Task Force on the Driver Shortage with the goal of identifying the extent of the driver shortage problem as well as several proposed solutions.
One of several initiatives the CTA BRTF developed was plan with was to work with provincial governments to require some form of mandatory entry level training (MELT) program in each jurisdiction.
Under mandatory entry level driver training, a prospective driver would have to complete a training program that meets an industry-approve standard before challenging the Class A license test – a key recommendation of the 2012 report from the Canadian Trucking Alliance’s Blue Ribbon Task Force on the Driver Shortage.
CTA believes that mandatory entry level training is essential in equaling the competitive playing field for compliant drivers while addressing the training quality issues that confront the industry, as well as attract young people who are increasingly turning to the trades and other certified professions as a career choice.
CTA, along with our sectoral council, Trucking HR Canada, has embarked on a project to lay the foundations for mandatory entry level training for truck drivers by updating existing National Occupational Standards, supporting curriculum development, and exploring various accreditation models.
Click on Drivershortage.ca for more information on MELT and everything else you need to know about the driver shortage issue in Canada.