CKCA’s Advocacy Committee is comprised of manufacturing and supplier members in the industry. Over the past few months we have developed materials that will serve as a tool to help you contact your politicians at all levels of Government, whether its municipal, regional, provincial or federal.
By inviting these politicians to either come and tour your facility, or to meet with you, it creates a personal experience and shows them what kind of business is in their back yard. These politicians are elected by their communities, but you cannot assume they understand all the different business operating in their area. This is your chance to reach out, speak up and be heard by the people who make decisions impacting your business. If you want to receive copies of the documents to use, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Because we need your help to get our collective message out across Canada. There are many challenges facing our sector, the labour shortage, the cost of technology adoption, foreign competition, increasing business costs etc. The more we can educate our politicians, the more informed they become when making decisions that have a direct impact on our industry.
Advocating is Educating
As a first step, Kevin Bowers from Dynamic Kitchens who sits on the Advocacy Committee volunteered and met with MP Karen Vecchio in late August 2022 when she accepted an invite to tour DK’s facilities. The MP and her assistant spent 90 minutes on a showroom tour, plant tour and office conversation. MP Vecchio was very receptive to hearing about the challenges of the industry and she raised concerns for labour shortages while on the plant tour. There was a good exchange about labour and the challenges we face from human capital as well as access to capital via grants. In the talk Kevin shared the CKCA package and discussed the industry and the association.
CKCA Board Member, Craig Atkinson from Marathon Hardware met with MP Bryan May on August 4, 2022. It was an informal conversation that included a focus on the wood products industry. Specifically, Craig raised issues about the extend of the wood products industry, workforce demographics, and competing with foreign imports. MP May spoke of details regarding local companies using Temporary Foreign Workers (TFW) recruitment. He also raised the need to attract people into “high tech” side of the industry.
Craig’s main takeaways: Our industry should seriously look at the TFW programs to bring in skilled people worlwide, example discussed is welding and tooling industry in Cambridge. Look at HR and consider the benefits/retention of workers just as important (if not more important) than hiring whenever possible.