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Safety training a must when buying land in Saskatoon

By COS staff

Homebuilders in Saskatoon are now required to complete mandatory builder training and safety certification in order to qualify for purchasing city-owned lots.

Under the revised policy, all eligible contractors are given two years to complete a total of seven mandatory training courses, either through the Saskatoon and Region Home Builders’ Association (SRHBA)’s Certified Professional Home Builder program or other training institutions first approved by Saskatoon Land. In addition, one of two safety courses — Leadership for Safety Excellence, provided by the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) or Health and Safety for Supervisors and Managers, provided by the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS) — must also be completed.

“As the voice of the home building industry in Saskatoon and region, we continually advocate for increased education among the professionals we represent. These standards bring a higher level of consistency and efficiency to the home building industry that protect the investments of consumers and increase the quality and safety of housing in Saskatoon,” said Chris Guérette, CEO of the SRHBA.

Collin Pullar, president of the SCSA, agrees that companies will see noticeable improvements to business operations with the addition of safety training and certification requirements.

“Homebuilders who invest in safety management systems are not only protecting their workers, they are investing in methodical practices for becoming higher-performing companies that can deliver quality homes to consumers on time, on budget, with zero deficiencies and zero injuries,” said Pullar.  “Embedding safety measures in an industry where we see high rates of injury, year-over-year, is a step in the right direction for our province.”

Requiring this type of training and certification is unique to Saskatoon as it is the only city in Canada with the reality of having the city in the land development business, said Guérette. Other cities may be involved at some level, but not in direct competition with other developers.

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