MHCA acknowledges it is located on Treaty One land and the homeland of the Metis Nation

AN INDUSTRY FOR ALL

The heavy construction industry has always drawn its workers from various groups within our communities. The Manitoba Heavy Construction Association’s Diversity tab provides members, managers, employees and future employees resources and information, aiming to assist with recruiting, hiring and retaining workers and making all workers, from all backgrounds, welcome. Take a look at our initiatives, to see what we’ve done and where we’re going.

MHCA Chair Nicole Chabot is a champion for diversity and inclusion in the workforce.

“One of the misconceptions is that if you have a diverse workplace, workforce or culture of diversity that you’re automatically inclusive and what we’re finding is that’s not the case. Do people feel welcome?”

“It’s one thing to invite someone to the table but if they’re never part of the conversation, they never feel like they’re part of the team then we haven’t finished the work.”

Listen to Nicole Chabot speak about diversity on this podcast, with Stuart Murray, CEO of The City of Human Rights

DIVERSIFYING OUR WORKFORCE

Who works in heavy construction?
This diverse industry has something for everyone, whoever you are and whatever your skills, qualifications or interests. Our industry members are proud of their work in attracting people from all backgrounds.

There are numerous, well-developed resources, including on-line courses and seminars for employers, managers and employees on what diversity looks like, why it’s important to you and how we can all work to ensure successful implementation of respectful workplace policies.

EMPLOYERS/ MANAGERS

Workers

Future Workers

Resources for all

Messages

BE THE CHANGE YOU WANT TO SEE, YOUR CAREER IN HEAVY CONSTRUCTION AWAITS
This industry and this association are intent on providing jobs and careers to all. 

AN INDUSTRY FOR ALL

MHCA and the heavy construction industry are expanding efforts to raise awareness, educate and recruit new workers from the broad community, including among Indigenous groups, women and newcomers. 

MHCA’S LEE WOODS NAMED VOLUNTEER OF THE YEAR: TOURISM WINNIPEG
MHCA Marketing and Communications Coordinator Lee Woods is proud of his work to raise the profile of Pride Winnipeg.
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Do you have questions about the MHCA’s marketing materials and publications? Contact Lee Woods at lee@mhca.mb.ca

LATEST NEWS

Get into heavy construction

MHCA has been working with various industry and community partners to diversify recruitment and employment in the heavy construction industry.

Looking for work? Need to hire?

Click here to post your resume or a job position on the MHCA WORKSAFELY® job board.

In the news

Report urges worker safety while respecting cultural differences

January 18, 2023

A new research paper argues that as increasing numbers of immigrants are welcomed to Canada as an important tool for economic growth, systemic improvements are required to occupational health and safety (OHS) practices to ensure they can work as safely as their non-immigrant co-workers.

Read article

CSA survey on women’s PPE finds you can’t just shrink it and pink it

November 23, 2022

When it comes to making PPE for women’s bodies, you can’t just shrink it and pink it.

A new report published by CSA Group, Canadian Women’s Experiences with Personal Protective Equipment in the Workplace, found only six per cent of women say PPE they wear is designed for them.

Read article

Job fair recruiting more women into the trades

November 22, 2022

More than 400 women attended the Women In Trades conference in Winnipeg. The event aims to recruit more women into the construction sector. Swidda Rassy reports.

Watch now

Building jobs for the future

November 22, 2022

Carol Paul is busy.

Last Wednesday, she flitted around the Manitoba Construction Sector Council’s second-ever women in trades conference.

Read article

Gender Equality Week: The role construction plays

September 19, 2022

Gender Equality Week runs until Sept. 24 and is meant to highlight the contributions women and gender-diverse people have made in shaping the country and to celebrate the strides that continue to take place each day.

Read article

Forget one-size-fits-all: Why PPE built for women means safer working conditions

August 4, 2021

Canada is facing a major skilled trades shortage over the next decade. While measures are being taken by local and national leaders to attract more workers to the trades, more can be done to recruit from one relatively untapped demographic: women. However, there are many barriers women face when it comes to joining the construction trades, a major one being safety.

Read article

August 18, 2021

The MHCA, as part of the Manitoba Construction Sector Council, is involved in a number of initiatives to attract women and Indigenous people to the industry. 

Province of Manitoba | News Releases (gov.mb.ca)

Manitoba funding trades training for Indigenous women

August 19, 2021

Sietta Marsden, 19, of Pinaymootang First Nation, says it can be intimidating for women to step into the industry, but the training course helped her overcome her initial reservations. Now she can be a role model for younger women considering construction as a career.

Manitoba funding trades training for Indigenous women (aptnnews.ca)

  • Indigenous women in Manitoba have a new opportunity to take trades training in their communities – August 19, 2021 – Listen here
  • With equity far from reality in Manitoba’s unemployment rates, construction and manufacturing sectors are targeting a “she-covery” strategy to move forward – March 8, 2021 – Listen now
  • Pandemic job losses impact more Manitoba women than men – March 8, 2021 – Read article
  • Pink portable toilets a signal of changing site attitudes? – June 25, 2021 – Read article
  • Manitoba tech, construction sectors get $50K to boost women in trades – March 8, 2021 – Read article
  • Manitoba recognizes International Women’s Day with funding for career programs – March 8, 2021 – Listen now
  • Leading family business into next generation – April 29, 2020 – Read article

Interested in talking to someone about your future in heavy construction? Call us at 204-947-1379.

BE THE CHANGE YOU WANT TO SEE, YOUR CAREER IN HEAVY CONSTRUCTION AWAITS

This industry and this association are intent on opening job and careers to all. As Past Chair of the MHCA Board of Directors, I welcome you to the MHCA new Diversity web resource. It’s starting small – highlighting some of the work that has been done to increase representation in our industry – with full intention of growing fast to provide members and potential workers resources that support recruitment and employment.

I grew up in the industry, working at the family business and chose a career with L. Chabot Enterprises, where I am now Vice-President. This was no easy or pre-ordained path, however. Step into heavy construction – it is an interesting, vibrant environment with multiple opportunities to find a niche, but it demands a commitment that rivals most other workplaces.

Its rewards, however, are immediately tangible. Good pay, meaningful work and wide-open career opportunities. I very much believe in “see it, be it.” I am not the first Indigenous woman to make this industry my home, but I recognize there are too few of “me” and too few from diverse communities working in heavy construction.

This is very much about seeing and being seen, because that’s a necessary element of successful recruitment and retention. This web resource is also about assisting our industry, our employers with their work to attract, welcome and retain employees from a greater diversity of groups and communities.

The heavy construction industry is open to you, however you may identify. We hope you’ll consider the opportunity to also describe yourself as a heavy construction worker.

Nicole Chabot, G.S.C.

Past Chair, Manitoba Heavy Construction Association
Director, Canada Construction Association
V-P, L. Chabot Ent.

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An industry for all

Message from MHCA President & CEO

MHCA and the heavy construction industry are expanding efforts to raise awareness, educate and recruit new workers from the broad community, including among Indigenous groups, women and newcomers. This builds on the numerous training program and outreach efforts to date, including in 2019 when MHCA became a signatory to the Winnipeg Indigenous Accord.

In 2022, the MHCA worked diligently as part of a working group to advise the City of Winnipeg on the  development of its social procurement policy and action plan. The MHCA, other industry and social enterprise organizations sought to help create a policy and an action plan that would ensure the targeted equity groups (Indigenous, racialized, newcomer or LGBTQ2S+) benefit from the city’s $400-million+ annual procurement program.

This work included working as part of a coalition to ensure that the necessary pre-employment, education and training are tailored to the needs of individuals in the equity group communities, and that provincial education and training programs and policies are aligned with both the needs of those individuals and the labour force needs of employers. This is seen as the best means of helping individuals ladder successfully from training to employment and careers – from poverty to prosperity.

In addition, the MHCA met with Hon. Jon Reyes, co-chair of the Immigration Advocacy Council (IAC), an IAC sub-committee and submitted recommendations to the IAC to:

  • Minimize the Provincial Nominee Program processing to enable timely arrival to Manitoba of immigrants possessing demonstrated skills in occupations needed by the private sector
  • Eliminate the biased point selection, allowing equal priority consideration to each skilled trade or occupation identified as being needed by the marketplace; and
  • Request that identified Heavy Construction Skilled Occupations be recognized as skilled occupations in demand by the heavy construction industry.

These are examples of the industry’s and MHCA’s dedication to diversity and inclusion. This will step up MHCA’s collaboration with these groups on meaningful efforts and initiatives to see diverse and non-traditional individuals enter the heavy construction workforce.

Please take the time to visit MHCA’s Diversity webpage to learn more.

Chris Lorenc, B.A., LL.B.,
President & CEO, MHCA

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Moving beyond stereotypes – diversity in heavy construction

Did you see the recent story about pink porta-potties on British Columbia construction sites? I must admit, it raised an eyebrow or two. Really? Pink?

Pink is such a tired metaphor. But I admit I think a porta-potty without a urinal is a welcome development.

We need to push past stereotypes. So, I am beyond happy to be part of a concerted effort to launch the Diversity resource on our MHCA website. So much potential and value in this initiative, which aims to move beyond the view that heavy construction is the domain of one gender and largely of one colour.

I am the MHCA Diversity Advisor. My position reflects the fact the MHCA and its WORKSAFELY® team are doing more work to diversify the heavy construction labour force. And we wanted a spot to showcase that work, to assist our members and to show those interested in seeking jobs and building careers that we welcome you. And our Board agrees.

I want to be your contact for any questions or suggestions regarding diversity and the heavy construction industry.

The MHCA will be posting the work we have and continue to do to generate interest in heavy construction among non-traditional labour groups, including young people (click here). For example, our high-school ‘introduction to heavy construction’ program with the Seven Oaks School Division begins in September and I anticipate it will find its way into many more educational settings.

The fact is heavy construction employers are facing labour and skill shortages, much as is construction generally. We need you to take an interest in this industry. Our employers need to ensure they offer a welcoming environment, capable of training new recruits.

A lot of the material you will find on these pages intends to inform, to educate and to start a discussion.

That is where you and I come in.

Please don’t hesitate to contact me with your questions, queries and suggestions at 204-947-1379 or jackie@mhca.mb.ca

Jacqueline Kent, CAE
Education and Diversity Programs Advisor, MHCA & WORKSAFELY®

 

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