Over the last few weeks, the Commission de la construction du Québec (CCQ) sent almost 152,000 vacation cheques to Québec construction workers. A total of more than $420 million has been distributed.
This is a rise of almost 5% in the total value of amounts paid out in comparison to the summer of 2017 ($400 million). This variation is explained mainly by the increased construction activity recorded in the last six months of 2017.
The construction holiday
This year, the two weeks of the construction holiday will begin officially on Sunday, July 22, and end on Saturday, August 4, inclusive.
The vacation is obligatory for the construction industry as a whole, in all sectors.
However, there are exclusions to the summer holiday, including many civil engineering and roadwork projects. In addition, work related to emergencies, repairs, maintenance, renovations, and modifications may continue. This is the case, for example, for sites at some schools.
In total, about 80% of the workforce – workers and employers – will be on vacation during these two weeks. In 2017, the construction industry comprised 157,000 workers and 25,000 employers.
Construction activity on the rise
The number of hours worked in the construction industry grew by 1.9% in 2017, reaching 148 million hours. This performance reflects a certain stabilization of construction activities falling under the Act Respecting Labour Relations, Vocational Training and Workforce Management in the Construction Industry (Act R-20), after several years of contraction following the peak achieved in 2012.
In the first quarter of 2018, activity continued the recovery of late 2017, thanks to a favourable economic situation and some major construction sites, notably in the greater Montréal region. More than 30 million hours worked were worked in this quarter, a variation of +9.5% in comparison to the same period in 2017.
Appendix - Regional data table.