OTTAWA—In celebration of Women’s History Month and the changing role of women in construction, BuildForce Canada and Women Building Futures have announced that they are teaming up to lead more women into careers in construction.
"Encouraging more women to pursue the construction trades is not only the right thing to do; it's a necessity," said Rosemary Sparks, BuildForce Canada executive director.
"Construction is undergoing major change and that creates a tremendous opportunity for women to make their mark in one of Canada's most important industries. We're confident that both women and industry will benefit from our new partnership."
BuildForce and Women Building Futures share a commitment to bolster the number of women in construction and help industry fill the skills vacuum as baby boomers retire.
One quarter of Canada's construction workforce, or as many as 250,000 skilled workers are planning to retire this decade.
"We are delighted to partner with BuildForce to further raise awareness among women that the world of construction offers endless career opportunities, which also tend to support a very nice lifestyle. Who wouldn't want that?" said JudyLynn Archer, Women Building Futures president and CEO.
"Thousands of women are ready to enter the workforce or make a career change, and we want them to know that we are here to help."
While the number of women in construction is increasing, the proportion of women who make up the skilled trades workforce in Canada remains at approximately four to five per cent.
BuildForce Canada is a national industry-led organization representing all sectors of the construction industry.
Its mandate is to provide accurate and timely labour market data and analysis, as well as programs and initiatives to help manage workforce requirements and build the capacity and the capability of Canada's construction and maintenance workforce.
Women Building Futures operates the first trades training facility of its kind in Canada for women.
Located in Edmonton, the facility offers pre-trades competency-based training in trades ranging from welding and ironworking to carpentry and electrical.