National Strategy for Supporting Women in Trades
In 2018, CAF-FCA hosted the first-ever national conference dedicated to female participation in the skilled trades. In 2019, the second Supporting Women in Trades Conference was held in Vancouver. In total, more than 600 delegates gathered at the events to share ideas and engage in a conversation on how to remove the barriers women encounter pursuing careers in which they are traditionally under-represented. A Road Map to Supporting Women in Trades was developed in 2018 from results of the inaugural event and the subsequent 2019 conference culminated in a CAF-FCA commitment to lead the development of a national strategy.
Apprentices, tradeswomen, representatives from women’s organizations, labour groups, employers, educators and jurisdictional apprenticeship authorities will inform strategy content and establish a national target to increase participation and retention of females in skilled trades careers. The task force, comprised of 60 representatives from CAF-FCA member organizations, is being led by co-chairs Lisa Stevens (BC Construction Association), Melissa Young (NETCO), Nour Hachem-Fawaz (Build a Dream), and Joann Greeley (Office to Advance Women Apprentices).
The National Strategy for Supporting Women in Trades will be introduced in the fall of 2020. With the country needing thousands of new trade professionals to fill the existing skilled trades gap, an informative strategy that addresses policy and structure is imperative.
Apprentice Demand Labour Market Information
CAF-FCA received funding from Employment and Social Development Canada to produce apprenticeship-focused LMI from 2018 to 2021. As a part of the CAF-FCA consultations, employers are providing insights about their hiring expectations and identifying the trades where they require more apprentices. To date, CAF-FCA has met with employers and apprenticeship stakeholders in Yellowknife, NWT, Calgary and Edmonton Alberta, Vancouver, British Columbia and Hamilton, Ontario. Any employer insights and practical advice is being captured and communicated to youth and under-represented groups through a series of videos. The first is now available at careersintrades.ca.
Annual reports and fact sheets summarizing national data analysis, including apprentice registration and completion rates, will be published on the CAF-FCA website. A national employer survey was completed as a part of the project to determine the employer participation rate in apprenticeship and employer hiring preferences. A report will be published on the CAF-FCA website in the coming months.