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Harper Government expands economic opportunities for women in non-traditional occupations


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April 12, 2013 by Staff Report

A roundtable meeting was held in Regina, Sask. on April 10 to discuss women in non-traditional occupations, and highlighted the Harper Government’s commitment to increasing economic opportunities for women.

“I am proud that our government supports the full participation of women in the economic and social life of our country, including in non-traditional occupations,” said Susane Truppe, Parliamentary Secretary for Status of Women and Member of Parliament for London North Centre. “I believe the greater the role women play in these sectors, the more they can contribute to jobs, growth and long-term prosperity.”

To meet this priority, Economic Action Plan 2013 announced a number of measures to better connect Canadians with job opportunities. These measures will contribute to increased representation of women in all occupations, including skilled trades and other non-traditional occupations, many of which are experiencing skills shortages.

“Our Government remains focused on what matters to Canadians – jobs, growth and long-term economic prosperity,” said Rona Ambrose, Minister of Public Works and Government Services and Minister for Status of Women. “Empowering more women to succeed in non-traditional careers makes sense for Canadian women and Canada’s economy.”

Susan Truppe is hosting a series of roundtables, as well as meetings with representatives from various non-traditional sectors for women including, mining, engineering, and construction trades.

“We are honoured to host this Status of Women Canada roundtable,” said Larry Rosia, president and CEO of the Saskatchewan Institute of Applied Science and Technology. “There has never been a better time to pursue a trades or technical education. Technology is essential to economic development, and there are excellent career opportunities in a wide variety of technical fields.”

Women now represent nearly half the Canadian workforce, yet continue to be under-represented in areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. In 2009, women represented just 22.3 per cent of Canadians with occupations in engineering, mathematics and natural sciences. In 2012, women represented only 4 per cent of those working in construction trades, and 20 per cent of those working in primary industries such as forestry, mining, oil and gas.

The government’s support through Status of Women Canada for community-based projects has nearly doubled since 2006-2007, from $10.8 million to close to $19 million, its highest level ever.