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Certification Program Implementation

November 14, 2007 
OTTAWA -- Buildings in Canada will become safer than ever for Canadians and their families as a new professional certification program for Building Officials gets underway. For the first time, Building Officials - the people who review all plans and inspect homes, apartments, hospitals, office towers, shopping malls, and many other types of buildings to make sure they comply with current building codes -- will be certified to a National Standard as qualified professionals. 

"The result is safe, code-compliant buildings right across the country," says Mannie Withrow, who will award the first 14 certifications at a special event today at the Sheraton Hotel in Ottawa. Mr. Withrow is President of the Alliance of Canadian Building Officials'Associations (ACBOA)".

"It is high time these professionals who are knowledgeable and well-trained get the credit and recognition they deserve," adds Mr. Withrow, noting that Building Officials, whowork behind the scenes to provide a level of comfort and safety for all Canadians, often did not get the respect they deserve because of the lack of national standards for this profession. "When we do our job right, nothing happens and Canadians get to enjoy the use and occupancy of all buildings across this great country."

Over the past couple of years, the Construction Sector Council (CSC) has partnered with ACBOA, the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), and other industry stakeholders to develop national occupational standards and a certification process that measures Building Officials' qualifications against an approved standard.The CSC's Executive Director, George Gritziotis, says "Another important result is that the new national program means Building Officials' credentials will be recognized in all jurisdictions allowing them to work in any province."

"The initiative addresses the challenge of an aging workforce and the inadequate supply of skilled labour," he says. "It will provide greater worker mobility, a wider variety of job opportunities and maintain the high level of professionalism required of this important occupation in the construction industry."

Established in 2001, the Construction Sector Council (CSC) is a not-for-profit national labour management organization mandated to address the human resource issues facing the construction industry in Canada. The CSC is supported by the Government of Canada's Sector Council Program.