Report predicts Manitoba to soon face dire labor shortage

by Truck West

WINNIPEG, Man. – The Manitoba Trucking Association (MTA) says its province will face a dire labor shortage with a shortfall of 10,000 drivers by 2026, and government must step up to fund training and help fill the gaps.

The MTA said the projection comes from the Asia Pacific Gateway Skills Table’s ‘Labour Market Information Project’, which indicates that more than 177,375 jobs will need to be filled in four transportation sectors across Canada’s four western provinces in the next decade, with Manitoba facing the most difficult hiring conditions of all provinces due of workers migrating to other areas of the country.

“We need more than one new job a day, seven days a week, every week of the year for the next decade and we just aren’t doing what we need as a province to support the demand,” said Terry Shaw, executive director of the MTA. “We need to be recognized as a trade and have funding in place that matches the designation.”

Because commercial driving is designated a certified occupation and not a skilled trade, prospective drivers cannot receive provincial funding for training and must fork over around $8,600 out of pocket for their education.

“The workers our industry attracts don’t typically have $10,000 lying around in RRSPs or other savings,” Shaw said. “There was a shortage in other industries and the levels of government responded accordingly. We now need the same treatment to ensure goods that Canadians depend on can keep moving from coast to coast and beyond.”

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  • We all know transport company always cry for drivers and they do not look at their practice and complain a lot to attract attention so the government would introduce incentives to hire local drivers but also open the doors wide open for foreign so call temporary workers and the company gets grants and pay the lowest fee for their FTW drivers.
    And after it is time for them guys to go or apply for residency they run far into the crowd and work underground for to be impossible to find them and returned to their country.
    This is what Canada a great importer of poor and muslims is doing so far.

  • Trucking industry has created their own mess. Hope they suffer for it as there is NO RESPECT TO DRIVERS and CRAP WAGES.

  • If there’s a driver shortage there must also be a truck shortage as we don’t have autonomous trucks. If there’s a truck shortage then rates should be up/increased and in turn driver remuneration will be increased. No one has ever been able to convince me of this mythical driver shortage yet.

  • I can’t agree more Michael. The industry has done a poor job with supply and demand. We always increase the supply in good times. Why not keep the supply even and increase the rates so the driver and worker can get a raise ? The other benifit is when there is a slow down the supply is manageable and we don’t have to give all our rate increases back to keep the fleets moving .

  • We need a trucker strike for 14 days then the government people an the big wheels that own the big companys will wake up to no food or milk in the morning.they keep talking about driver shortage but do nothing about it.It wages wages guys.

  • Like every one has said time and time again up the rates and perks the drivers will come back. The trucking companies need to stop over paying management and start investing in drivers. Start paying a living wage so drivers have family time. Lower the hours of service and up the rates. Quit wasting money on useless management the don’t pay the bills!

  • Too bad the industry does a terrible job of retaining and attracting people to their industry. The MTA has been announcing the same message for years, but do they have a strategy to fill the “shortage” besides complaining to government?

  • There is a “qualified” driver shortage. Any trucking company doing road tests today would agree that the calibre of driver isn’t the same as the old days. So what are we going to do about it? Ontario is the first province to introduce Mandatory Entry Level Training (MELT) implementing in 2017. This system requires a level of competency be obtained.
    We have youth that is suited for the trades, we need to attract them. We are competing with more sexy occupations like fire fighting, or policing–both with higher costs of entry yet.
    Manitoba has issues getting drivers, firstly they need to share those opportunity with those that have access to new drivers, like registered truck schools. Secondly, commercial drivers need to make an investment to determine whether this is a profession they can do. Stop wasting their valuable time and resources on something they cannot master or do not want to master within the parameters of the job. We don’t expect a firefighter to jump into a fire without training.

  • Driver shortage MB is caused by low pay and the Fed. Government not allowing small companies to bring in 3 new drivers and one mechanic per company per year Steve Webster