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ECAO Annual Conference- Postponed

ECAO Postpones the Annual Conference in Prague. 

The government of the Czech Republic approved a nationwide quarantine that prohibits much free movement across the Czech Republic in ongoing efforts to halt the spread of coronavirus in the country. As a result, ECAO has decided to postpone the Conference in Prague. Future conference details will be provided at a later date.

To read Graeme Aitken’s full message click here.


Corona Virus Update:

Relevant links and information can be found on the ECAO website at

Federal Government Announcement on Assistance During the COVID 19

Helping Businesses Keep their Workers

To support businesses that are facing revenue losses and to help prevent lay-offs, the government is proposing to provide eligible small employers a temporary wage subsidy for a period of three months. The subsidy will be equal to 10% of the remuneration paid during that period, up to a maximum subsidy of $1,375 per employee and $25,000 per employer. Businesses will be able to benefit immediately from this support by reducing their remittances of income tax withheld on their employees’ remuneration. Employers benefiting from this measure will include corporations eligible for the small business deduction, as well as non-profit organizations and charities.

Flexibility for Businesses Filing Taxes

The Canada Revenue Agency will allow all businesses to defer, until after August 31, 2020, the payment of any income tax amounts that become owing on or after today and before September 2020.  The Canada Revenue Agency will not contact any small or medium (SME) businesses to initiate any post-assessment GST/HST or Income Tax audits for the next four weeks. For the vast majority of businesses, the Canada Revenue Agency will temporarily suspend audit interaction with taxpayers and representatives.

Ensuring Businesses Have Access to Credit

The Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI) announced it is lowering the Domestic Stability Buffer by 1.25% of risk-weighted assets, effective immediately. This action will allow Canada’s large banks to inject $300 billion of additional lending into the economy.

The Bank of Canada also took a series of actions to support the Canadian economy during this period of economic stress, enhance the resilience of the Canadian financial system, and help ensure that financial institutions can continue to extend credit to both households and businesses. This included cutting the interest rate to 0.75% as a proactive measure in light of the negative shocks to Canada’s economy arising from the COVID-19 pandemic and the recent sharp drop in oil prices.

Temporary Income Support for Workers and Parents

For Canadians without paid sick leave (or similar workplace accommodation) who are sick, quarantined or forced to stay home to care for children, the Government is:

  • Waiving the one-week waiting period for those individuals in imposed quarantine that claim Employment Insurance (EI) sickness benefits. This temporary measure is in effect as of March 15, 2020.

To read the complete announcement, click here.


ECAO Contractors Helping in Time of COVID 10 Crisis

ECAO Member, AM-Tech has offered the Ottawa Hospital the balance of their unused N95 masks, as well as P100, fitted personal respirators to help with the hospital shortage. AM-Tech is requesting that all ECAO Contractor Members help out locally with similar materials in this time of need during the COVID 19 epidemic.

Electrical Safety Authority Suspends Electrical Inspections in Occupied Areas

ESA has asked ECAO to advise our members on ESA inspection changes as a result of COVID 19. The full memo is attached but the main details are listed below:

  • ESA staff will not be attending external meetings of large groups until further notice.
  • All Training Sessions and all Master Exams are canceled until the end of April 2020.

Effective immediately, ESA inspectors will not enter occupied areas of the following facilities:

  • Long Term Care Homes and Seniors residences
  • Hospitals
  • Retirement Homes
  • Day Care facilities
  • Personal Dwellings – including homes, apartments, and condos
  • Community Housing for non-critical routine inspections

Access Arranged, Inspectors will notify customers/clients directly they will not be coming for Inspections that meet the above limitations. 

2020 Skills Ontario Qualifying Competitions Canceled


In light of the developments of Coronavirus (COVID-19), after careful consideration, Skills Ontario has made the difficult decision to cancel the 2020 Skills Ontario Qualifying Competitions (April 4), the 2020 Skills Ontario Competition (May 4-6), and all corresponding events.

ECAO Safety Awards Cancelled


It is with regret that we have to advise that the ECAO Safety Awards scheduled for May have to be cancelled due to the current COVID 19 situation.

ECAO will continue to have the presentations of the RH Carroll Safety Award winners at this year’s ECAO AGM being held in Ottawa on September 16 and 17.


IBEW Apprentices are Set Up for Red Seal Success from the First Term

In Canada, an electrician must write a four-hour exam to earn their 309A construction and maintenance electrical license— and their Red Seal.

A Red Seal certificate of qualification entitles a skilled tradesperson to work anywhere in the country, thanks to standardized requirements. It means that employers can trust in the skills of electricians from outside the province and that electricians can travel to where there’s work if their home province experiences an economic downturn.

This ability to travel helps preserve the overall supply of electricians in Canada. It avoids the necessity for electricians to move into other careers when work is no longer available in their home province. It’s a win-win for both employers and employees.



EFC Scholarship Program

Application Deadline: May 31st, 2020.

Electro-Federation Canada (EFC) and its members are proud to support the next generation of leaders who will power a changing world in the Canadian Electrical industry. This industry is made up of inventors, creators, and visionaries who are creating new approaches to how electrical products are used by Canadians at home, work and play. View this video to learn more about the industry.

The EFC Scholarship program provides post-secondary students who are interested in pursuing a career in the Electrical industry, with funding to support their academics.

If you’re a post-secondary student who is pursuing a career in Electrical Engineering, Electrical Technologist/Technician, Industrial Distribution, Sales, Marketing, Finance, Human Resources, Supply Chain/Operations, Logistics, Data Analytics Management or Information Technology – then consider a career in an industry that is committed to a safer, more environmentally-sustainable future for Canadians. Take the first step by applying for up to three scholarships now!


ECAO Members Have Access to CECA Documents


Did you know that as a member of ECAO you are a member of the Canadian Electrical Contractors Association (CECA)?

The national voice of Canadian Electrical Contractors since 1955.
Member discounts on all publications

NECA Manual of Labor Units (MLU) 2019-20 Book, PDF or CD
Job Site Journals - Developed specifically for electrical contractors. Bilingual.
Canadian Electrical Installation StandardTM (CEISTM)

Tel: 416-491-2414 | Email: | Website:

Electrical Safety Authority issues 2020 Safety Awards Call for Nominations Now Open.

Have you encountered electrical safety hazards or identified safety issues that, if not addressed, could have posed a serious threat to a homeowner, a family, or the community? Or perhaps you or someone you know has created an initiative or program that helps keep people safe from electrical harm.

If you have a story to tell, ESA wants to hear from you! We want to celebrate and recognize your contributions that make Ontario a safer place to live, work and play - in the workplace or in the community.

Submit your nomination today!

Submissions are accepted up until May 25, 2020, in the following three categories:

  • Powerline Safety
  • Worker Safety
  • Consumer and Home Safety

The awards will be handed out at the annual Ontario Electrical Safety Awards in Mississauga on Sept. 24, 2020.

Here’s how to submit a nomination:

Visit and either download the form or fill out the online version. ESA is here to support you with the entry process. If you need clarification on how to enter or for anything regarding the submission process, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us at

Nomination deadline: May 25, 2020

Ontario Exploring How To Prepare More People for Good Jobs

As part of its commitment to preparing people for jobs, the Ontario government is launching a review of its slate of training programs to ensure workers are developing the in-demand skills that employers are looking for.

The Workforce Development and Training Review, announced by Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development Monte McNaughton, will include consultations with industry, employers and other partners who play a role in hiring, training and retaining talent. The review will study how to improve existing skills training programs, including the Second Career and the Canada-Ontario Job Grant, as well as other workforce development system features, like local workforce planning.



Skills Ontario and Women’s Trade Group


KICKASS CAREERS — KickAss Careers is a school and community outreach program whose goal is to engage, educate and encourage young men and women to consider careers in the mechanical, industrial, technology, construction and advanced manufacturing industries.

Skills Ontario is collaborating with KickAss Careers, Women in Renewable Energy (WiRE) and Women of Powerline Technicians (PLT) to strengthen efforts to promote career opportunities in the skilled trades and technologies.

“There are groups out there that are doing similar work and it made sense for us to try and coordinate and collaborate with them,” said Ian Howcroft, president of Skills Ontario. “KickAss Careers (founder) Jamie McMillan is an ironworker with a great story to tell and she has been part of ours for a long time. We thought, why don’t we formalize that with her and what she is doing and tie together the outreach activities of both organizations. We did the same with Women in Renewable Energy and Women of Powerline Technicians.”


Electrical Safety Authority (ESA) MEDIA RELEASE

How to Verify a Licensed Electrical Contractor Validate your Contractor’s ECRA/ESA license number when hiring for electrical work MISSISSAUGA, ON (March 6, 2020) – 

On February 4, 2020, Mr. Daniel Smith, was convicted by the Ontario Court of Justice, for operating an electrical contracting business without a license and failing to apply for an electrical inspection.

Mr. Smith was sentenced to a total fine of $6,875 including victim surcharge. Mr. Smith was also ordered to pay restitution to the homeowner in the amount of $1,000. In August 2018, Mr. Smith was advertising electrical services as a Licensed Electrical Contractor on an online classified advertising services platform and fraudulently used the ECRA/ESA license number that belonged to a Licensed Electrical Contractor.

Ontario contractors will be busier in 2020: Ontario Construction Secretariat

The Ontario Construction Secretariat released its annual Construction Survey. ( Please note this is based on contractor feedback in 2019 and won’t reflect the current economic impact of the Corona Virus on Ontario’s construction industry)

The 2020 Contractor Survey has found that contractors’ business confidence has gone up this year in every region of the province. Overall, 39 percent of contractors in Ontario expect to conduct more work this year compared to last, while only 12 percent expect less. Confidence is highest in the GTA where 43% of contractors anticipate more work.

Looking at Ontario’s ICI construction industry as a whole rather than their own business, 44 percent expect that there will be more construction activity this year, up significantly from 2019 when only 31 percent expected more activity.

Recruiting skilled workers and the aging workforce are contractors’ top concerns for the third year running. About three-quarters of contractors now consider recruitment a significant concern, with 57 percent of contractors indicating that the aging workforce is a significant concern. Sixty-nine percent of contractors anticipate that getting skilled labour will be more difficult this year than in 2019. Six-in-ten contractors report being affected by skilled labour shortages in the past three years.

To Read the full article and to get the full survey results, click here.


Certi-Fire Training Program 

Minister Monte McNaughton recently visited local IBEW 804 to promote the use of Certi-Fire electricians.

To see the video go here

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Electrical Contractors Association of Ontario

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