Trick of the Trades: CAF-FCA announces women’s taskforce

Ottawa, Ontario — September 2, 2019 — On Wednesday, the Canadian Apprenticeship Forum (CAF-FCA) announced the creation of a new task force responsible for developing a national strategy for women in trades.

“Our country is going to need thousands of new trades professionals in the next five years, and the creation of a national strategy to help attract more women to the trades will be critical to meeting labour market and economic needs,” said Shelley Gray, CEO of B.C’s Industry Training Authority and task force participant. “To do this, it’s important to develop workplaces that are welcoming, positive, and inclusive of everyone interested in pursuing an apprenticeship.”

The team is drawn from CAF-FCA members from across Canada, some of whom are apprentices, tradeswomen, representatives from women’s organizations, labour groups, employers, educators and jurisdictional apprenticeship authorities.

The creation of the task force has been pursued by the CAF-FCA since its 2019 national conference. The new group will inform specific strategy content and establish a national target to increase participation and retention of females in skilled trades careers.

“We already know what the barriers are. Insights from this task force, along with twenty years of CAF-FCA national research in the area will provide a clear direction on how to create sustainable change.” said France Daviault, executive director of CAF-FCA. “The entire skilled trades community needs to work together and set targets for increasing female participation – what gets measured gets done.”

The first meeting of the CAF -FCA Strategy task force is set to occur on September 9, 2019. The National Strategy for Women in Trades will be presented at the National Apprenticeship Conference in Calgary, AB on May 24-26, 2020.

CAF-FCA  is a non-profit organization that connects Canada’s apprenticeship community. Participants work collaboratively to support vibrant and innovative apprenticeship systems and policies with a view to developing a highly skilled, inclusive and mobile skilled trades workforce. For more, visit

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