The Provincial and Federal governments have been working hard to ensure the safety of Canadians, while also properly assessing the steps required to re-open the economy.
OSPE and the engineering profession’s commitment to safeguarding public interest is especially important in these uncertain times. Engineer’s have responded to the COVID-19 crisis by uniting to retool, pivot, and otherwise discover innovative solutions to this pandemic. We are proud to see engineer’s focus on leading the way in full effect over the last few months.
As part of OSPE’s efforts, we have launched a COVID-19 Economic Recovery Working Group, whose purpose is to provide the Ontario and Canadian government with concrete and actionable recommendations for the immediate, short and long-term economic recovery of our province. This will be an ongoing effort to determine the best ways engineers can help the province prosper, while also creating sustainable wealth and jobs.
Like others, the engineering community has been severely impacted by the pandemic, as thousands of engineering jobs are directly linked to the infrastructure, manufacturing, technology and research and innovation sectors. Key activities such as the development of technical designs, studies, planning, operations management, and construction have also ceased. This not only affects engineers and engineering graduates, but the entire Ontario economy, as engineers are a vital part of many sectors.
Engineering knowledge and talent is beyond capable of leading Ontario’s industries into the future and will play an important role in the immediate, short and long-term economic recovery of our province. As such, the province must support the engineering community in rebuilding the engine that powers Ontario and the rest of the country.
To ensure preparedness for future events and build an economy that is strong and benefits all people, it is imperative that new government funding allocations provide a sustainable benefit for diverse, future generations by ensuring a targeted focus on building sustainability, investing in talent development and retention, and fostering innovation.
The engineering community believes that Ontario’s economic recovery plan will be better suited to deliver tangible results if it is considered from a three-phase approach:
- Phase 1: Immediate and urgent measures needed today to create the conditions to re-open the economy, looking at strategic multi-sectoral economic levers.
- Phase 2: Short-term investments required to sustain the initial economic growth in Phase 1. These measures should support technologies that drive efficiencies and reflect the work force reality post COVID-19.
- Phase 3: Additional medium and long-term supports that create a prosperous transition to a knowledge-based, innovative economy that engineers are key in helping create and sustain.
OSPE’s goal is to make sure engineers are put in a position to thrive once the economy begins reopening. Promoting public safety and the environment, while advancing a diverse and inclusive society must be reflected in government plans moving forward.
OSPE has presented the Ontario and Canadian governments key recommendations, pertaining to Phase 1 Immediate and Urgent Actions.
For more on COVID-19 and its affect on engineering in Ontario, visit our COVID-19 news page.