Staffing shortages are affecting the ability of health care, social assistance and educational organizations to meet client, patient and student needs. This report outlines what exactly is going on in caring occupations and provides some actions we can take to support the workforces and employers engaged in caring work.
This report looks at the supply and demand for caring work in Waterloo Wellington and Dufferin. Our occupations of concern came from health care, educational and social assistance/support agencies who serve a variety of clients. In health care, we looked at registered nurses, registered practical nurses and personal support workers. Educational assistants, early childhood educators and teachers were our focus in education. We also looked at social and community service workers who work in a variety of roles from child and youth workers to developmental support workers and beyond. They work in children's services, group homes, shelters and many other settings.
The most prominent trend that we saw provincially is that many of those who choose to work are working and unemployment rates range from suppressed (less than 1%) through to 2.6%. For 4 of the 6 occupational groups that these jobs fall under, the labour forces have also grown in the past 6 months across the province. Employment locally has also fluctuated year-to-year and even month-to-month. There is a lot of uncertainty for these roles. The full details for each occupation and some early ideas for how we move forward as communities can be found in the report.