Canada faces one million job losses an internal government report warns.
And the ripple effects also will affect Canadians working in industries not directly tied to transportation.
All of this will come about due to the coming boom in automated vehicles.
The report was prepared by Employment and Social Development Canada.
It was undertaken to help bureaucrats develop policies that will help ease the burden of these disruptive changes in the workplace.
The report notes that as many as 500,000 transportation jobs will be affected.
And they will range from truck drivers, to subway operators, taxi drivers and courier services.
As well another 600,000 jobs will be affected such as parking attendants, auto-body repair employees.
Police and emergency personnel also will feel the impact.
Canada Faces One Million Job Losses
The retraining of these people will be difficult, the report says.
And what is even worse – if these employees turn to other jobs they likely will be automated also.
The government realizes that a national effort will be required to counteract the negative effects of driverless vehicles.
It has pledged $1.8 billion to help pay for expanded skills training programs.
“Employment and Social Development Canada continue to work closely with the provinces and territories in order to strengthen retraining, skills upgrading and employment support for Canadians facing labour market disruption,”
But that will not be easy.
So says Christopher Monette, director of public affairs at Teamsters Canada.
In an interview with The Tyee newsletter he says:
“We’re very disappointed the report limited itself to education and retraining. It’s misguided and we think these transportation workers deserve better. Focusing on retraining is almost like saying the appropriate response to a tsunami is teaching people how to swim.”
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is aware of the implications automation will have on the workforce.
“We’ve seen the challenges and the anxieties that are out there amongst Canadians right across the country and our focus is on making sure that everyone has a real and fair chance to succeed,” he says.