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How we’re working to solve Nova Scotia’s labour shortage

Owning a small business means wearing many hats – but it shouldn’t mean spending your valuable time covering for positions you can’t fill. 

Sadly, that’s one of the biggest problems facing businesses in Nova Scotia today: a shortage of qualified labour. This has hobbled owners, who are forced to sacrifice their time to do other jobs, rather than focusing on ways to grow and improve the business. 

What’s more alarming is that, given how the region’s population is aging, the problem could only get worse. That’s why we’re pushing the government to help you fill the thousands of positions that are vacant in the province. 

Focus should expand beyond just high-skilled employees

The region’s Atlantic Immigration Pilot Project is a very good start, welcoming more immigrants to Atlantic Canada to offset some of the population decline. One way to improve this program is to copy Alberta’s Opportunity Stream, which provides a path toward permanent residency. This gives new arrivals more security and owners like you more potential employees. 

The program focuses on filling high-skilled jobs, but many of you also need less-skilled employees, who learn while they work and gradually advance. The government could help by opening up immigration to people with more skill levels so you’re not constantly struggling to fill entry-level jobs or jobs where on-the-job training is needed. Government can also do much more to off-set the cost of the training your provide to your workers. 

Boosting productivity shouldn’t mean sacrificing everything else

Investing in your business carries great rewards, but it can be difficult to scrape together enough funding for new technology, training and equipment. The overall burden of taxes, fees and red tape only makes it harder; that’s why also we’re asking the government to encourage investment by eliminating some of the costly barriers.  

Urge the government to support your business’ labour and productivity needs! Sign our Action Alert and give it to your CFIB representative. 

February 25, 2019

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