b'JAMES BARRYHe sees this is where a strong collaborative partnership with ECAO and its contractor members is crucial: There needs to be constant dialogue between the IBEW and ECAO contractors to ensure we reach common goals for the health of our industry. OnerecentaccomplishmentBarryismostproudofisthatduring the last round of bargaining, the two parties were able to once again secure a joint proposal. He encouraged local unions and local ECAO chapters to discuss and mutually negotiate local area changes to the principal agreement.Ienvisionedthatlocalunionsmustplayaprominentroleinthe negotiation of the joint proposal, states Barry. He also explains that the provincial agreement does not always capture the unique issues in each locals jurisdiction, where the locally negotiated agreements address the realities of their specific demographic and jurisdictional marketplace. Together with the ECAO, we hope to improve and refine this process during the next round of negotiations.There has been a lot of discussion about the looming skilled trade short-age coming to Ontario, as many tradespersons are expected to retire in the next five to 10 years. Barry does not see this same shortage in the electrical trade.Our local unions and LACs carefully monitor the number of members retiring and balance thatnumber with new apprentice entrance on a local-by-local (basis) across the province, always with a mindful eye on the economy and its demands in the construction industry.It is paramount that the electrical trade continues to be a restricted trade and the value of the 309A Red Seal continues to grow, because itsahighlyskilledtrade,whichhasneverhaddifficultyattracting new entrants.This is also why Barry has publicly stated that changes proposed by the provincial government to existing scopes of practice will only erode the value of the electrical trade and pose a safety risk to electricians, the consumer and the general public. Barry also states that the relationship between ECAO and the IBEW CCO has become more cohesive with the appointment of Aitken as ECAOs executive director. Graemesintegrityindealingwithissuesregardingbargainingand government relations is not lost on IBEW business managers and our presidents, says Barry.It is also important, in Barrys view, to acknowledge that Mark Watson has joined the IBEW CCO in an executive capacity as his assistant. Before joining the CCO team, Watson was the business manager of IBEW Local 804 (Central Ontario). In Barrys view, Watson is an articu-late, young, strategic leader and will clearly demonstrate his abilities in the coming years.I think Mark and I strike a good balance for the IBEW/CCO going forward, making sure we meet the needs of our large membership, says Barry.While there is no shortage of challenges for the electrical industry, Barry believes there continues to be a strong and growing future for the IBEW CCO and its signatory contractors.It is more important than ever that we remain focused on building the value of the IBEW ECAO brand to ensure we not only sustain but grow our position in the markets we serve, he adds.Ontario Electrical Contractor9'