Ontario Offering Free Training for Roofing and Drywall Careers in Niagara

Ontario Offering Free Training for Roofing and Drywall Careers in Niagara

Province working for workers by giving job seekers a path to meaningful work

April 19, 2022
Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development

WELLAND — The Ontario government is working for workers by investing over $1.2 million in skilled trades training for unemployed and underemployed people in Niagara Region. In partnership with Niagara College, the Niagara Homebuilders Association is offering 80 participants the opportunity to get the skills they need for well-paying careers as roofers and drywall installers. Training will lead to paid job placements with local employers building the homes that families need. “All across our province, we continue to see a shortage of workers in the skilled trades, for many life-long careers that pay six figures with defined benefits and pensions,” said Monte McNaughton, Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development. “These unfilled jobs cost our economy billions in lost productivity and mean families are waiting longer for the goods and services they need. That is why our government is making strategic investments to offer hands-on training and paid work placements for eager job seekers in Niagara, connecting them with local employers in their community who are ready to hire.” Participants will receive their technical training at the School of Trades at Niagara College, where they can pursue either roofing or drywall installation based on their interests. For eight weeks participants will take courses on health and safety, tools and techniques, and other skills specific to their trade, which both pay $27 an hour on average.

Each participant will get a hard hat, steel-toed safety boots, safety glasses, and professional-grade tools they need to perform their training – all of which they get to keep. They will then transition to a six-week paid job placement with a local employer in the community. Employers are eligible for up to $5,000 per participant to offset wages paid.

“Studies show that as many as one-in-five jobs within the province of Ontario will be in the skilled trades by the year 2025,” said Richard Lawrence, President of the NHBA. “This program will allow the NHBA and Niagara College to develop and train students with the skills they need in order to be job site ready to work their way into building a stable career, while filling the void of the 100,000 workers our industry needs over the next decade.”

“Niagara College is grateful for this funding, which will help us address an urgent need for skilled workers in the residential construction industry,” said Sean Kennedy, President, Niagara College. “Today’s investment by the province supports our important role working closely with industry partners to meet the current and future needs of employers.”

This project is funded by Ontario’s Skills Development Fund, a more than $200 million initiative that supports innovative programs that connect job seekers with the skills and training they need to find well-paying careers close to home.

To apply, contact Alicia Dimitrov-Lawrence at [email protected] or 905 646-6281.

Quick Facts

  • Demand for skilled tradespeople in the Niagara area and across Ontario is growing, based on online job postings in the last six months.
  • Ontario’s Skills Development Fund is supported through labour market transfer agreements between the Government of Canada and Government of Ontario.


"Home builders across Niagara are building the places where so many will live, work and play. The need for skilled tradespeople continues to grow, and this investment will help close the skilled trades gap in Niagara, allowing for more homes to be built across our region, and improving housing affordability for Niagara families. " - Sam Oosterhoff
Member of Provincial Parliament, Niagara West

Additional Resources

Media Contacts

Harry Godfrey
Minister's Office
[email protected] Ciara Nardelli
Communications Branch
[email protected]
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