Women in Construction

Plenty of opportunities for women in construction, RESCON says

March 9, 2023
By Canadian Contractor staff
Presented by:
Canadian Contractor

The Residential Construction Council of Ontario (RESCON) is marking International Women’s Day by encouraging more women to pursue careers in the skilled trades, including construction, and calling for employers and governments to continue promoting the industry.

“With the aging workforce and pending retirement of many Baby Boomers, there will be expanding opportunities in the coming years for women looking to work in the construction industry,” says RESCON president Richard Lyall. “We need more women in the industry and must create opportunities for school-aged girls to learn about the possibilities and types of varied careers available in construction. There are a number of initiatives under way to recruit more women.”

RESCON says it has taken such steps as sponsoring the Young Women in Science, Technology and Trades Conference at Durham College for several years – the two-day annual event enables girls in Grades 7 and 8 from several regional school boards to learn about the trades and get hands-on experience working with tools in different workshops.

Through a partnership with George Brown College in Toronto, RESCON also places several female students each year with employers on residential construction sites.
RESCON has also hosted Women in Construction webinars where women in the trades and professionals discuss topics such as their experiences in the industry and what must be done to recruit and ensure women stay in the skilled trades.

Presently, women account for less than five per cent of construction workers, RESCON said, and yet close to 100,000 construction workers will be needed in Ontario alone by 2030. According to BuildForce Canada, women make up only 4.8 per cent of new apprentice registrations. “This indicates there are still significant opportunities,” RESCON officials said.