What the new Community Benefits Agreement means for tradespeople in B.C.

Community Benefits Agreements (CBAs) are growing in popularity in British Columbia, and for good reason.

The provincial government introduced CBAs on public infrastructure projects in July 2018, while Vancouver became the first major city in Canada to implement a city-wide CBA policy shortly thereafter, in August.

Under the Vancouver policy, developers of future large-scale projects will be required to guarantee a minimum of 10 per cent of entry-level jobs to Vancouverites. Developers will also have to purchase a minimum 10 per cent of goods and supplies from Vancouver-based businesses.

Provincially, CBAs gained popularity in July 2018, when Premier John Horgan announced that the province’s first CBA would be applied to the Pattullo Bridge replacement between Surrey and New Westminster.

Under the provincial framework, hiring provisions ensure opportunities for Indigenous workers, local residents, apprentices and women in trades. Workers receive union wages and benefits for the duration of the project and also have access to additional safety and training programs.

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