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January 17, 2013

Mechanical contractors and plumbing institute to work together

Building on a memorandum of understanding inked in 2008, the Mechanical Contractors Association of Canada (MCAC) and the Canadian Institute of Plumbing and Heating (CIPH) are currently collaborating on several initiatives--including hosting a Day on the Hill in Ottawa.

MCAC president Richard McKeagan said planning is getting under way on the inaugural event, designed in part to boost the profile of both the contractor and supplier sides of the industry and also highlight some issues of mutual concern. He said Senator Don Plett, a former Manitoba mechanical contractor, has agreed to assist in the initiative and sponsor an event on Parliament Hill on April 30.

In the more immediate future, the national contractors’ association and the institute have joined forces with the World Plumbing Council to promote World Plumbing Day March 11.

Plumbing organizations across the country are poised to undertake activities with the aim of raising awareness of the important role played by Canada’s plumbing industry.

Representatives will be approaching the federal, provincial and municipal governments for their support in promoting and officially proclaiming World Plumbing Day.

The goal is to continue the momentum experienced in 2012 and to expand awareness at the public school level. Power-point presentations will be made available for school discussions.

McKeagan said the two organizations have also been working to develop a best practices guideline document on supply chain management dos and don’ts for product suppliers and contractors.

Richard McKeagan

“When something happens on the jobsite in terms of (disrupted) deliveries, everyone is affected,” he said.

"The two organizations are also working to build on the institute’s strategy to raise “positive” awareness of the plumbing and heating industry as a whole in the eyes of industry recruits and to help grow the MCAC’s service and repair contractors’ division," CIPH president and general manager Ralph Suppga said.

The four-year-old MOU provides a mechanism for cooperation between the two organizations through an exchange of information on common educational, technical, scientific, legislative and regulatory matters that affect the industry locally and nationally.

For its part, the CIPH has backed the efforts of the National Trade Contractors Coalition of Canada to secure prompt payment legislation. MCAC is a founding member of the coalition.

In a spirit of cooperation, the two organizations have also agreed to continue to prompt their respective regions, boards and zones to meet at least once a year to explore how they can ”strategically” build and nurture relationships at the local level.

The MCAC represents close to 1,000 companies across the country. The CIPH has 260 member firms that manufacture and distribute plumbing and other products.

Follow Patricia Williams on Twitter @Patricia_DCN.

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