Professional Engineers Ontario

Professional Engineers Ontario

July 10, 2013 12:19 ET

Engineering Regulators in Alberta, Manitoba, New Brunswick and Northwest Territories Speak Out Against Ontario Policy Reversal

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - July 10, 2013) - Engineering regulators across Canada are speaking out against the decision by the Ontario government not to proceed as scheduled with repeal of section 12(3)(a) of the Professional Engineers Act, known incorrectly as the "industrial exception." Despite its almost three-year legislative commitment to the repeal, which was approved in the legislature as part of the government's Open for Business Act in October 2010, on June 12 the government cancelled its September 1, 2013 effective date for the repeal and did not set a new effective date.

Section 12(3)(a) allows non-licensed people to do acts of professional engineering on equipment or machinery used to produce products for their employer in their employer's facility.

The four groups, the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Alberta (APEGA), the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of the Province of Manitoba (APEGM), the Association of Engineers and Geoscientists of New Brunswick (APEGNB), and the Northwest Territories and Nunavut Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists (NAPEG), have all written Ontario's Attorney General John Gerretsen to voice concerns about the government's decision.

"Our members are speaking out because Ontario is the only jurisdiction in Canada that allows an unlicensed person without the supervision of a licensed practitioner to do an act that is within the practice of professional engineering and this shouldn't be the case," said Kim Allen, MBA, P.Eng., FEC, chief executive officer of Engineers Canada, the federation of provincial/territorial engineering regulators. "It is difficult to understand why it is acceptable for Ontario to have a lower standard than other provinces and territories when it comes to protecting its workers."

Engineering regulators across Canada, established by statute in each province and territory, are aligned on the need for the repeal to ensure that all Canadian regulators are equally able to regulate the practice of professional engineering to serve and protect the public interest.

"The Ontario government's decision is extremely regrettable as repealing this narrow exception as scheduled would have improved worker safety in Ontario's manufacturing sector," said Michael Price, MBA, P.Eng., FEC, acting chief executive officer and registrar of Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO). "According to the Association of Workers Compensation Boards of Canada, Ontario's manufacturing sector has the highest fatality rate in Canada and the highest accident rate of any business section in Ontario. Engineers are committed to public safety and professionally accountable by law for all acts of professional engineering, except in this narrow area. This is a significant missed opportunity to protect the public."

PEO will continue to meet with key ministers and MPPs in the coming weeks to share concerns with this decision.

About Professional Engineers Ontario

Through the Professional Engineers Act, PEO governs over 80,000 licence and certificate holders and regulates professional engineering in Ontario to serve and protect the public. Professional engineering safeguards life, health, property, economic interests, the public welfare and the environment. Professional engineers can be identified by the P.Eng. after their names. Visit www.peo.on.ca.

Contact Information

  • Professional Engineers Ontario
    David Smith
    Manager, Communications
    416-840-1068; 800-339-3716, ext.1068 or Cell: 416-458-4140
    dsmith@peo.on.ca
    www.peo.on.ca