Canada’s population is rapidly aging, putting pressure on labour markets across all industries. Simultaneously, the proportion of youth (15 to 24 years) has been declining. As these trends extend over the next 10 years, Canada will see an increase in the proportion of the population that is potentially retiring and a decrease in the proportion of the population that is potentially available to enter the workforce. These dynamics imply potentially tighter labour markets going forward. As a significant share of the country’s population enters retirement age, the construction industry will have to contend with exits from the industry through retirements.
If the current situation remains unchanged, the pool of new workers to the industry may not be sufficient to offset retirements. The Indigenous and female workforce are a potential untapped pool of labour that can be used to meet future demand.
This study seeks to quantify the Aboriginal construction workforce; determine to what extent existing services and infrastructures are effective in linking Aboriginal youth to construction employment; and assess the industry’s capacity to increase the recruitment of Aboriginal people. A follow-up to 2003 research that identified Aboriginal populations as a viable future source of labour, the study was undertaken in partnership with the Aboriginal Human Resource Development Council of Canada.