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Carpenters’ partner with CAWIC to attract women to the trades

cawicDON PROCTER

Kellie Leitch, federal minister of labour and minister of status of women, shakes hands with Kathy Bedard, second-year carpenter’s apprentice, at the Carpenters and Allied Workers Local 27 training facilities recently in Woodbridge, Ont.

TORONTO

Kellie Leitch, federal minister of labour and minister of status of women, recently visited the Carpenters and Allied Workers Local 27 training facilities in Woodbridge, Ont. to discuss funding provided to CAWIC.

The Carpenters’ union and the General Contractors Section-Toronto Construction Association (GCS-TCA) have teamed up to be one of the Canadian Association of Women in Construction’s (CAWIC) partners in a three-year initiative to develop an action plan to improve women’s advancement into leadership roles in the building industry.

While nearly 50 per cent of Canada’s workforce is women, less than four per cent of the workforce is “on the tools” in the building trades is women, said Tammy Evans, president of CAWIC.

In February the federal government awarded a $249,900 grant to the CAWIC for the project. “It is an exciting initiative that helps to create a strong union, a strong industry, strong communities and a strong country,” Mike Yorke, president of Local 27, told a group recently when the grant was announced at the local’s training facilities.

Raising awareness of construction management careers is the first step towards attracting top talent, said Ivana Cotic, labour relations officer of the GCS-TCA, which sponsored CAWIC for $30,000 for its three-year initiative.

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