Breakout Sessions - DEI Best Practices
Date & Time
Sunday, June 11, 2023, 2:40 PM - 3:40 PM
Brandi Ferenc Alanna Marklund Liz Sandwith Vidhya Selvaraj

B3: Taking a Proactive Approach to DE and I While Breaking Down Barriers for Women - Gurpreet Chana & Vidhya Selvaraj
Room: Richardson Conference Centre, Salon A/B

This interactive session will highlight how a newcomer organization became a leader in offering innovative programs to help women break barriers to enter skilled trades while providing DEI training to employers/participants to create inclusive workplaces. • Learn, how a newcomer agency created Pre-Apprenticeship programs for improving women’s barriers to employment while addressing the skilled labour shortages • Understand how an innovative partnership with a National Organization led to a proactive approach to DEI training for employers and women prior to entering the workplace • Reflect on the best practices learnt to take a proactive approach to DEI

B4: Recruiting & Retaining Women in the Skilled Trades: Why Pregnancy, Maternity, Parental Benefits are Essential Alanna Marklund & Liz Sandwith
Room: Harrow/Essex/Canterbury

UA Canada is committed to ensuring a good quality of life for its members and their families. To recruit and retain more women in the skilled trades, we must adapt and think outside the box. We need to consider the barriers women face in the skilled trades and develop new and innovative ways to eliminate those barriers. 
One solution is UA Canada’s National Wellness Program. It is the first of its kind in the industry, providing pregnancy benefits to members across the country, as well as maternity and parental leave benefits for working mothers, fathers and adoptive parents. 
Come discover why pregnancy, parental, and maternity leave benefits are so important to the growth and success of women and families in the skilled trades. Programs like this create a change in construction culture, and by doing so, increases diversity and inclusion within the industry. 

B5: Changing the Status Quo in the Skilled TradesBrandi Ferenc
Room: York

During this presentation I will breakdown the barriers faced by women currently working in the skilled trades in addition to the seemingly invisible barriers faced by women trying to enter the skilled trades. I will outline solutions to these issues and how we as an industry can collaborate to move the needle. The reality is nothing has changed and it's time to remove the gender from the job. I will discuss the importance of mentorship and support to help women navigate a male dominated landscape and be successful.