Author Archive

New Camp Marine Module Boating Course

Posted on May 5, 2015 by Government Relations Committee

Dear CCA Camps,

The Government Relations Committee is proud and relieved to finally send this very important email update regarding the newly approved Camp Marine Module boating course, which we have successfully created and designed over the last few years. We are very pleased with the result, albeit a bit later than we had hoped, but certainly in time for this summer for camps across Canada.

The new course has been created to replace the Small Vessel Operator Proficiency (SVOP) and Marine Emergency Duties A3 (MED A3) requirement for many camp boats that qualify through a certain set of conditions set by Transport Canada. Other factors, including location and vessel size, may limit certain camp vessels from the use of this course. This certification will allow camp boat operators to carry 7-12 passengers plus crew (as opposed to just 6 passengers) as long as they also hold a valid Pleasure Craft Operator Card (PCOC) and a minimum of Standard First Aid, among a few other requirements. The new course is 1.5 days in length including some practical hands-on components. Some camps may be required to add an additional half-day to complete Chapter 17 entitled “Navigation”, should Transport Canada deem this a requirement based on a camp’s location and waterways travelled.

A Quality Management Manual (QMM) has been developed to explain the details surrounding course specifics, course participants, instructors, the use of this new certification, the likely conditions required by Transport Canada to be met thru the Marine Technical Review Board (MTRB) process and all the details regarding the examinations.

Thanks to the financial involvement of the Canadian Camping Association (CCA) and that of a number of Provincial Associations, there is no fee associated with this new course, unless camps need to hire someone to instruct the course. Details regarding the Instructor approval process (for camp staff or otherwise with the required experience and qualifications) are part of the QMM but camps may also hire instructors already approved by Transport Canada by visiting the appropriate CCA and Ontario Camps Association (OCA) web pages for their contact information. The OCA office will play an important role of documenting and tracking of approved instructors and certified boat operators; these details are also included in the QMM.

In concert with getting boat operators certified with this new course, camps will be required to follow the Transport Canada procedures to apply for the appropriate MTRB decisions for their camp vessels.

These decisions will officially exempt camps from the SVOP and MED-A3 requirement for 7-12 passengers by allowing the use of this new certification to be used instead.


Please visit the Ontario Camps Association website to see that Association’s information.

Monitor this site as it will be updated in the near future.


Please download:

In  summary, if a camp would like their boats to carry 7-12 passengers without having boat operators with the SVOP and MED-A3 certifications, assuming boats are already Commercially registered vessels, then they need to do the following:

1 – Contact Transport Canada to begin the process to apply for an MTRB exemption using this new Camp Marine Module.  An MTRB decision is made for each vessel not for each camp, so more than one MTRB will be required depending on how many boats camps will carry 7-12 passengers.

2 – Schedule a Course by:

a) having an in-house staff member approved by Transport Canada to instruct the course

b) hire an already approved instructor listed on the CCA and OCA website to instruct the course

c) send boat operators to another course already being offered by another camp

Please direct any inquiries to and answers will be provided as quickly as possible.  Also, pertinent information will be added to the webpage devoted to this new course as we’re sure there will be some important information to share during the first year of this new certification process.

Too many Transport Canada officials and politicians to mention were instrumental in seeing this project through, but we offer them a huge thank you.  Kudos also to Course Manual developer Ray Krick and Instructor Manual/Presentation creator Jamie Gordon.

Thank you for your patience through the last few years, but we are very fortunate to be able to offer this type of course across Canada to camps and vessels that qualify to use this certification.

Craig Perlmutter
Government Relations Committee
OCA Vice-President

Call for Assistance – Temporary Foreign Workers

Posted on April 24, 2015 by Government Relations Committee

Dear CCA Camps,

I am contacting you on behalf of the Canadian Camping Association (CCA) Lobbying Committee.

We need your help. Recent changes to the federal Temporary Foreign Workers Program are making it extremely challenging for camps to hire American and International staff. Canadian camps have always taken pride in hiring mature, skilled individuals with a wide range of backgrounds and experiences. These staff help create a diverse, safe and caring culture within our camps ensuring that the highest of standards can be met. They often are campers who grew up in our camps as well. While camps prioritize hiring Canadians, our international staff fill gaps in our staffing that we are unable to fill with qualified Canadian applicants.

The recent elevated changes to the costs and logistics associated with bringing foreign workers into Canada will make it virtually impossible for some camps to hire them for this coming summer and in the future. The government originally was very supportive of our cause, but now has postponed scheduled meetings and is very slow to communicate with us and literally is not responding.

We are asking all CCA camps (regardless of whether or not your hire international staff) to help us by contacting any Conservative MP that you may know- either by sending a letter indicating your concern or by a phone call. If you do have any very close contacts or a personal relationship with Minister Alexander or any Conservative MP please contact Mark Diamond ( so that he can determine the best way to communicate with such a person to help present our position.

Mark Diamond, Owner/Director | Camp Manitou

Update – LMIA Exemption Charitable or Religious Camps

Posted on February 25, 2015 by Government Relations Committee

Dear CCA Members,

We have some important updates regarding the LMIA exempt work permits utilized by religious or charitable camps.  The new process to apply for an LMIA exempt work permit is outlined at the following  web-page:

It has also been announced that the new $230 employer compliance fee will NOT be charged for staff working at religious or charitable camps who are earning less than minimum wage.

Although this is a very big win for our industry, our government lobbying team still has a long way to go to make sure all camps have a suitable solution for acquiring their international staff.  We will be sure to provide updates on their efforts, but please feel free to contact Jonathan Nyquist ( or Mark Diamond ( if you have any specific questions.

News on Temporary Foreign Worker Program

Posted on February 15, 2015 by Government Relations Committee

Hi CCA Membership,

We wanted to get in touch with a short-term, significant change to the Temporary Foreign Worker Program.

The government has recently announced a new ’employer compliance fee’ of $230 and a new required pre-application process for any organization that hires staff through an LMIA exemption. This includes camps who hire foreign workers through the Religious or Charitable LMIA Exempt work permit.  Please refer to the following notice for further details:

Despite our best efforts to connect with the government on this, we do not know if this fee will be per individual worker or just per employer. The fee does not come into effect until February 21st, 2015 and so your camp may want to submit your foreign worker applications before that time.  The actual LMIA exempt work permit itself, that a foreign worker will pick up at the border/airport, is still fee-exempt.

By contacting the email addresses below (depending on where you are located), you will be able to receive the application information required to submit an assessment of your eligibility for the LMIA exemption.

Toronto (serving Ontario, British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Yukon, Northwest Territories and Nunavut)

Toronto Temporary Foreign Worker Unit

Montreal (serving Quebec, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick, and Newfoundland and Labrador)

Montreal Temporary Foreign Worker Unit

The CCA government lobbying team will be back in Ottawa on February 20th to address this issue as well as continue to develop short and long term solutions for our industry.  In the mean time, if we hear any definitive news on the $230 fee that does not make this action so pressing, we will be sure to let you know!

We may need your support in contacting the government regarding this matter, but we recommend waiting until further information is provided following next week’s meeting.

Specific questions regarding this matter can be directed to Jonathan Nyquist ( and/or Mark Diamond (