Funding Supports Newcomer Skilled Trades Assessments, Building Officials Training

Source: https://news.novascotia.ca/en/2024/01/04/funding-supports-newcomer-skilled-trades-assessments-building-officials-training

Newcomers and Nova Scotians now have more access to training and certification in construction trades.

“We’ve taken bold action and made significant investments to help increase and preserve affordable housing in Nova Scotia,” said John Lohr, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing. “We also need to have enough skilled trades professionals and building officials to keep pace with development needs and ensure buildings are safe. These investments are helping to expand access to this important programming so we can build more homes, faster.”

The Province is increasing funding for the Work-based Trades Practical Assessment program and a training program run by the Nova Scotia Building Officials Association.

Expanding support for the Work-based Trades Practical Assessment program, a partnership between the Nova Scotia Apprenticeship Agency and the Immigrant Services Association of Nova Scotia (ISANS), will increase the supply of skilled trades professionals in the province. With this new funding, about 175 newcomers experienced in construction trades will receive support to complete their apprenticeship and work in Nova Scotia.

The Province is helping the Nova Scotia Building Officials Association expand its training program and create more opportunities for municipal staff to access specialized training needed to become a qualified building official in Nova Scotia. The government is also working to remove barriers and streamline the equivalency process for building officials trained outside Nova Scotia, including removing the six-month on-the-job training requirement under the association’s professional studies program.

The investments were identified in Nova Scotia’s five-year housing plan, Our Homes, Action for Housing.


“We are very happy to support more skilled newcomers with entering the workforce in their trade faster in Nova Scotia. Helping them complete their apprenticeship is an important step in getting more homes, hospitals and other infrastructure built across the province.”

– Michelle Bussey, CEO, Nova Scotia Apprenticeship Agency

“We are grateful for this support from the Province. It creates unprecedented opportunities that benefit employers and immigrants who bring experience in skilled trades from their home countries. With over 77 trades employers who are open to placing immigrant talents in their workplaces, this investment is significant and will go a long way in responding to the increasing demand for skilled trades in Nova Scotia.”

– Jennifer Watts, CEO, Immigrant Services Association of Nova Scotia

“The Nova Scotia Building Officials Association is excited to partner with the Province to grow the number of qualified building officials in Nova Scotia. This will help support new home construction, create more jobs and ensure safe buildings for our communities.”

– Dave Buell, President, Nova Scotia Building Officials Association

Quick Facts:

  • the Province provided $650,000 to the Nova Scotia Apprenticeship Agency for the Work-based Trades Practical Assessment program
  • the government also provided $400,000 to the Nova Scotia Building Officials Association to expand access to training
  • Prism Economics estimates about 11,000 new skilled trades professionals will be needed in Nova Scotia by 2030
  • Nova Scotia currently has about 113 qualified building officials across the province, less than the national per capita average of 15 for every 100,000 in population; they are responsible for inspections to support the administration and enforcement of the Nova Scotia Building Code

Additional Resources:

Our Homes, Action for Housing: https://novascotia.ca/action-for-housing/

Information about the trades practical assessment program on the Immigrant Services Association of Nova Scotia website: https://isans.ca/program/trades-practical-assessment/

Nova Scotia Apprenticeship Agency: https://www.nsapprenticeship.ca/get-started/newcomers-nova-scotia

Nova Scotia Building Officials Association: https://nsboa.ca/

Nova Scotia Building Code Training & Certification Board: https://nsboa.ca/nova-scotia-building-code-training-certification-board/

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