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Volume 04 | March 03 , 2021
ECAO 2021 Social Event and Annual General Meeting
Please mark your calendars for the ECAO Social Event and Annual General Meeting!!

ECAO has moved its Annual General Meeting to be held earlier in the year so that we can better present the past year in review. Our event will be virtual again and our social event will feature some comic entertainment relief. Stay tuned for more details to follow.
ECAO Hugh Carroll Safety Awards
Nomination Deadline has changed to April 30
The Annual ECAO Hugh Carroll Safety Awards has recognized ECAO Members who strive to put safety first in their day-to-day operations. The award was first launched in 2000 to recognize the significant contribution ECAO Member Hugh Carroll made in the field of health and safety in the electrical contracting industry. 
This year ECAO is moving towards expanding the Safety Awards criteria to allow for more applications and subsequent recipients. The application focus has shifted from a lagging indicator approach (statistics) to a combined lagging and leading indicator approach (initiatives and objects).
The focus will be on what employers are doing to engage workers and achieve a culture of safety that is team-based and interactive with management, and employees. Statistics still play an important role but are not the primary focus. 
Recognizing that there are big differences in the infrastructure of smaller companies, we have also made changes on the hours break down in this process to provide them with a better opportunity to showcase their health and safety initiatives and performance and be eligible for an award.

Click here to download the 2021 application form, and if you require any further clarifications please feel free to contact Sara Kitcher at [email protected] or Tom Mackay at [email protected]

The deadline for submission is Friday, April 30, 2021.
ECAO 2021 Q1 Magazine
Check out the First Issue of The Ontario Electrical Contractors Magazine for 2021. This issue focuses on Health and Safety issues of concern for ECAO Members.

Featured Spotlight
Opportunities for Contractors in Communications and Network Cabling
When: Wednesday, March 17, 2021
When: 3:00 pm

John O'Grady of Prism Economics will present the results of a study his firm did on Trends in the Low Voltage and Communications Cabling Market.

The presentation will describe how this market is growing and how some segments of the traditional electrical contracting market are migrating to low voltage.

O'Grady will also discuss how Ontario lags other jurisdictions in regulating low voltage installations.
Feature Spotlight
Milwaukee Tool unveiled their first lineup of laser solutions providing all-day run-time, best-in-class visibility, and easy set-up. The lineup includes two green lasers on the M12™ System, and three green lasers powered by REDLITHIUM™ USB. The M12™ Lasers join the largest sub-compact system, made up of more than 100 tools for maximum portable productivity, while the USB Rechargeable Lasers provide rechargeable convenience and performance.
Webinar Recordings
Electronic Logging Devices

Mobilizz, February 17

For more information on tracking and logging devices, please contact:
Chris Candy
647-660-2200 x28
ECAO Legal Experts Panel

Changes to Construction Contracts and the Impacts of COVID 19 on Contracts

February 15 | Dan J. Leduc, Glenn Ackerley and Robert J. Kennaley

ECAO Fire Alarm & Protection Certification Program - Distant Learning Level 5 (Recertification) Course
Is it time to renew your Certi-Fire credentials? Under the agreement with the Ontario Fire Marshal’s Office, the Certi-Fire Fire Alarm Certificate must be renewed every five years. We strongly encourage you to make arrangements to renew and keep your certificate current.
The Distant Learning Level 5 (Recertification) Course will be commencing on Thursday, March 18, 2021. The course will start at 6:30 pm in the evening. To learn more or to register contact Phyllis Lee at [email protected] or 1-800-387-3226 ext. 8509 for more information. 
ECAO Fire Alarm & Protection Certification Program - Distant Learning Level 1 Course Coming in Spring 2021
Having Certi-Fire Electricians on staff would bring you an opportunity to grow your business beyond Fire Alarm System installation and retrofitting!
The Certi-Fire program is recognized and approved by the Ontario Fire Marshal. It provides the licensed Electricians with the certification to meet the requirements and resolve the property management fire alarm concerns for proper fire alarm installation, testing, verification, and maintenance. There are four (4) consecutive levels in this program and recertification is mandatory every five (5) years to stay current with the code. 

Level 1: Conventional Fire Alarm Control Panels and Installation of Input and Output Devices
Level 2: Integrated Fire Alarm Control EVAC Systems and Fire Alarm Extinguishing Control Panels
Level 3: Troubleshooting of Complete Fire Alarm Systems
Level 4: Advanced Fire Alarm Control Panel: Addressable Digital and Analog Devices
Level 5 (Recertification): Update Codes, Standards and Technology

Registration for the Distant Learning Level 1 course is now open! The course will be tentatively commencing on Tuesday, April 20, 2021. It will start at 6:30 pm in the evening and take 3 hours per week and up to 12 weeks to complete the course depending on the participants’ schedule. 

To register please contact our Certi-Fire Program Administrator at [email protected] or 1-800-387-3226 ext. 8509 for more information.
Ontario plans major surge in rapid tests on job sites starting in March
Ontario Minister of Labour Monte McNaughton (far left) and Premier Doug Ford (second left) visited an EllisDon Jobsite on Feb. 18 to observe rapid antigen testing in operation.
The Ontario government has announced the province’s large construction employers will be giving up to 40,000 rapid antigen tests on job sites each week starting in March.
The program represents an escalation of the pilot testing program EllisDon is currently carrying out on a handful of its sites. The contractor began testing its employees as part of the Ministry of Health’s COVID-19 Rapid Antigen Test Pilot in December and announced its acceleration to other large sites on Feb. 8.
Antigen Rapid Tests Deployed in Construction- Council of Construction Associations of Ontario (COCA)
COCA has prepared a detailed outline of how the antigen rapid tests are being administered on Ontario Construction sites. The tests will primarily be used in the types of workplaces where there have been significant outbreaks or that pose the risk of significant outbreaks such as long-term care homes, manufacturing plants, food processing facilities, schools etc. However, trade contractors will bear the costs of the time it takes for each worker to down the tools, makes their way to the testing location, takes the test, waits for the result, returns to their workstation and gear up again. It’s estimated that this can take more than one hour on a large construction site.

To read COCA’s outline and full details on the antigen testing click here: PDF Document

FLAC and Diversity & Inclusion Column
FLAC Committee Co-Chair Announcement

We are pleased to announce the appointment of Clark Thomas from MarshGlobal and Melissa Peroff from T.P. Electric, as Co-Chairs for ECAO's Future Leader's Advisory Council #FLAC.
Diversity & Inclusion Committee Co-Chair Announcement

Please welcome Lena Singh from Symtech Innovations Ltd. and Ken Nepaul from Guild Electric Ltd., as Co-Chairs for ECAO's Diversity & Inclusion Committee.
Construction weighs in on anti-masking claims
Ontario construction health and safety stakeholders admit there remains one frustrating gap when it comes to protecting workers from COVID-19 — refusals by some workers to wear masks and physically distance themselves on site.

Despite improving COVID-19 prevention protocols, frequent consultation involving all players and the addition of new tools such as contract tracing apps and rapid testing, these particular gaps in their system’s last line of defence are disappointing.

While some stakeholders point to relatively low rates of infection and argue, typically, “I don’t know what else we can do,” others suggest there is room for improvement, with more fines for non-compliant workers and supervisors and the addition of COVID-specific protocol officers to crews among the recommendations.
Government of Canada Invests in Training for Skilled Trades Certification
The Canadian government is making targeted investments so that key groups facing barriers—like women, newcomers, Indigenous people, persons with disabilities, and Black and racialized Canadians—can better find work in the skilled trades through projects led by unions and their partner organizations.

The investment will be $63.5 million, over five years, for 68 projects as part of the Union Training and Innovation Program (UTIP) 2020 call for proposals.

Women find rewarding careers in electrical contracting

Apprenticeship training offered jointly by ECAO and IBEW
“When I got into the trade, I had never even used a drill before, but the point of an apprenticeship is to learn,” says electrical apprentice Abby McKelvie. SUPPLIED
For the electrical apprentice, Abby McKelvie, deciding to “grab the bull by the horns” was key to finding a rewarding career that pays well, provides benefits and involves hands-on work that requires critical thinking.

“I love it even more than I expected,” McKelvie admits. She decided to become an electrician after graduating from university with a degree in outdoor recreation and tourism and working a year in her field. Today, she’s an apprentice with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 530 in Sarnia.

International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination
To recognize International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, our friends at RESCON through their CARE initiative are presenting a webinar on Monday, March 18th from 1:00 pm to 2:00 pm. Speakers include Chief Prevention Officer Ron Kelusky and poet and author Nadine Williams.

EB PowerCon
Preparing our Apprentices & Electricians for the Future
Panel Discussion

When: March 22, 2021
Time: 11:00 am - 11:30 am