Thompson Rivers University
Thompson Rivers University

Trades in the News: Good News for Women

  Posted on: May 1, 2014

A couple of important stories appeared in the news in the past week. In the first, veteran BC tradeswomen discussed the significant changes in industry since the 1970s. Importantly, they reminisced about the critical role of an advocacy and support organization, Vancouver Women in Trades, which existed from 1979 until 1987. In spite of the positive changes they describe, including significant improvements in workplace culture, the numbers of women employed in the skilled trades are still much lower than hoped for. Happily, at TRU the numbers of women studying the trades are climbing steadily; female participation in foundation programs has grown from 5% to 17% in just 5 years!

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Also this week,  the Government of B.C. announced a new strategy for “re-engineering” education and training to focus on preparing students for in-demand jobs. In particular, the “Skills for Jobs Blueprint” makes specific recommendations aimed at increasing job-readiness.  “B.C. Labour Minister Shirley Bond said her government will now be guided by constantly updated labour market data to shape an education system that ensures graduates leave school with marketable skills.” We are hopeful that this announcement will mean greater opportunities for women to train for and secure profitable employment.

Keep your eyes out for an upcoming issue of the Kamloops Weekly News – you just might see a familiar face or two!

Looking for more information? Read the articles below, and remember to send me your comments, questions, or stories about life as a woman in trades.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/women-in-trades-veterans-say-changes-needed-to-boost-numbers-1.2621785

http://www.newsroom.gov.bc.ca/2014/04/bc-launches-skills-for-jobs-blueprint-to-re-engineer-education-and-training.html

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/british-columbia/bc-to-make-job-skills-main-focus-of-education-system/article18328567/