CFL Players’ Association Teams Up With Canada’s Building Trades Unions
In a unique initiative designed to help CFL players make successful transitions to new careers after football, the Canadian Football League Players’ Association (CFLPA) and the organization representing Canada’s Building Trades Union (CBTU) have launched a program that will allow CFL players to enter and complete a building trades apprenticeship. “This is a tremendous opportunity for our members to develop new skills that will launch their working careers beyond professional football,” said Jeff Keeping, President of the CFLPA. “With the support of the CBTU, our members can enroll in an apprenticeship program supported by any of the fourteen major affiliates of the CBTU while they are still playing in the CFL. The initiative is structured to allow players to complete the necessary hours and levels of their chosen apprenticeship during the off-season in either country” Keeping added. “Given the mix of Canadian and US players in our membership, this initiative has the added feature of ensuring that whatever completed trade a player achieves, that trade qualification will be fully transferable between Canada and the United States,” Keeping noted.
For its part, the CBTU sees the new initiative as a positive step for CFL players. “We are very, very proud to work with the CFLPA to develop a way for players on CFL teams to be able to find careers after football,” said Bob Blakely, the Canadian Operating Officer for the CBTU. “These players work hard at Canadian football and we would like to be there to help them be able to build the country that their sport feats have so impressed,” Blakely added.
The new initiative is part of the CFLPA’s on-going efforts to ensure that their members make successful transitions to new careers after retiring from professional football. The Association has established a career training academy that provides a wide range of support services to CFLPA members who are considering their career options. “This partnership initiative with the CBTU is a great example of a win-win approach to career planning that our association is working hard to advance on behalf of our members,” Keeping concluded.
Rachel Rollo – Coordinator of Association Administration