OCOT’s George Gritziotis Says “I Get It” – But Does He Really?

George Gritziotis

The IBEW wants to believe George Gritziotis, the new Registrar and CEO of OCOT, when he stated many times “I get it” as he responded to statements and questions raised about the realities of non-enforcement on ICI construction job sites across the Province.

“There is a proliferation of unscrupulous contractors that have unregistered workers performing work in the compulsory trades, one of those being the electrical trade,” said James Barry, Executive Chairman of the IBEW Construction Council of Ontario. “As well, these law breaking contractors are not abiding by the journeyperson-to-apprentice ratio requirements established and enforced by the Ontario College of Trades.”

James Barry and George Gritziotis
James Barry discussing the issue with George Gritziotis.

ECAO signatory contractors across the Province of Ontario that abide by the rules are at a loss as to why OCOT is not issuing NOCs (notices of contraventions).

“The Compliance and Enforcement policy set in early June 2017 as part of Bill 70, Schedule 17 gives the inspectors the ability to seek out the blatant and numerous violators. However, the college has mysteriously chosen not to act on behalf of its compulsory trade paying members,” continued Barry.

Mr. Gritziotis was a speaker at the Organizing Conference held on December 7, 2017 at the Hilton Lac Leamy near Ottawa.

Jeff Tremblay, President of the Electrical Contractors Association of Ottawa and Leif Janichen of their Executive Board (both of whom are electrical contractors), also attended to state their concerns regarding the lack of enforcement from the perspective of over 100 electrical contractors they represent in the Ottawa region, employing over 1500 electricians and registered apprentices.

Working Towards Improvement

Lief Janichen and Jeff Tremblay of ECA Ottawa, George Gritziotis of OCOT, and James Barry of IBEW CCO
Left to right: Lief Janichen (electrical contractor with ECA Ottawa) and Jeff Tremblay (electrical contractor and president of ECA Ottawa), George Gritziotis of OCOT, and James Barry of IBEW CCO.

Invitations were extended to George Gritziotis by IBEW and ECA Ottawa to work together to find solutions to strengthen the training of inspectors while investigating construction job sites.

James Barry concluded, “We hope that Mr. Gritziotis will reach out to the professionals in the electrical industry to help OCOT strengthen its integral part of the construction industry in the province of Ontario.”

Further Reading

You may find these articles about the enforcement issue and about apprenticeship reform helpful: