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Skilled Trades Benchmarking Agreement Between ACCC and UK NARIC

London, UK, March 13, 2014 –nr benchmarkingThe Association of Canadian Community Colleges (ACCC) and the UK’s National Recognition Information Centre (UK NARIC) have signed an agreement aimed at providing benchmark data to identify how British and Irish trade qualifications match up to Canadian requirements across nine (9) skill areas.

“ACCC is pleased to support initiatives to examine qualifications requirements that support the skills and jobs needs of employers,” said Denise Amyot, ACCC President and CEO and Chair of the World Federation of Colleges and Polytechnics. “Ensuring a good match between British, Irish and Canadian qualifications will provide greater flexibility to employers and help address skills gaps through greater access to talent.”

Funded by Citizenship and Immigration Canada, the initiative is designed to support the Federal Skilled Trades (FST) stream.  UK NARIC will liaise with the Red Seal Secretariat, as well as with provincial authorities to conduct the exercise, which will be undertaken between March and May of this year.

“Our Government’s top priorities are creating jobs, economic growth and long-term prosperity,” said the Honourable Jason Kenney, Minister of Employment and Social Development. “This project will help employers find the skilled employees they need to expand their businesses and succeed, and help newcomers get a job at their skill level faster.”

Minister Kenney attended the signing on behalf of the Honourable Chris Alexander, Canada’s Minister of Citizenship and Immigration.

Working with the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, UK NARIC is responsible for providing information, advice and assessments on credential equivalency for the UK. It has close to 1000 members, including the UK government, all Further Education (FE) and Higher Education (HE) institutions, as well as Sector Skills Councils, qualification awarding bodies, industry boards, and employers.

“This project benefits Canada, the UK and Ireland with improved efficiency of provincial assessments and identification of skills gaps to inform training requirements for UK and Irish trades people entering Canada,” says Lisa Collett, UK NARIC’s Head of Global Division. “By positioning the Red Seal Program Standards in a transatlantic context, UK NARIC and ACCC will provide a reliable and transferable model for skills mapping that can be adapted for future needs.”

ACCC is the national and international voice of Canada’s publicly funded colleges and institutes. We work with industry and social sectors to train 1.5 million learners of all ages and backgrounds at campuses serving over 3,000 urban, rural and remote communities in Canada. ACCC operates in 29 countries via 13 offices around the world.

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For more information:

Shawn Dearn
Director of Communications, ACCC
613-746-2222 Ext. 3123
Twitter: @ACCC_Comms

Alexandra Fortier
Office of Minister Kenney
819-994-2482

Alexis Pavlich
Office of Minister Alexander
613-954-1064