CITY HALL is examining the possibility of training apprentices to help deal with a shortage of tradespeople in Cork.
Both Cork City Council and Cork County Council have long been urged to develop trade apprenticeships for plumbers, plasterers and masons of their own rather than hiring in private contractors to carry out maintenance works for council tenants.
Councillor Thomas Gould (SF) recently submitted a motion to the city council asking the local authority to initiate a programme to hire and train apprentices.
“This could help the urgent shortage of tradespeople in the building sector and [I would ask] Cork City Council to call on the Minister to also roll out a coordinated programme to tackle the serious shortage of apprenticeships while also reducing youth employment," he said.
A report to the city council’s corporate policy states that an apprenticeship programme is now planned and would provide trainees with work experience through a seven-phase programme in association with Cork Education Training Board (CETB) “City Hall is currently examining the feasibility of introducing a four-year craft apprenticeship programme this year,” the report stated.
“Discussions have already taken place with CETB the regarding details of the programme regarding codes of practice for the employer and apprentice and assessor training.
“Cork City Council’s contribution to the programme would be to provide the on-the-job training and assessment with craft supervision and materials for a number of trades.
“Each participating area of the Council will need to provide assessors for the apprentices. The assessor is an experienced and technically qualified person in an occupational area who is responsible for organising and conducting assessments for assigned apprentices.
“The resources requirement for apprentices within the city council is currently being assessed within the operational areas of the council,” it added.
Over 1,300 staff are employed by City Council across all areas of operations.