By Anita Dawson, Business Representative
Why aren’t more Teamster women working as truck drivers?
Is a laundry production line job that different from beverage/food production line work?
Is there anything disqualifying women from getting class 1, 3 or 5 licences?
Pay equity for all women and men – it’s in our collective agreements. The Teamsters have achieved fair pay so that women
and men are equally compensated, valued and respected for the work they do regardless of race, gender or age. Now it’s time to
change the status quo and open up opportunities for women in workplaces that have been traditionally viewed as “a man’s job.”
Local 213 worksites offer many opportunities for women members.
Overall, Teamsters Local 213 women make up about 15% of our membership. The chart below offers a snapshot of how our
workforce is divided. It clearly shows that the percentage of women and men in some labour groups is almost even but
in other groups there are scarcely any women at all! Now is the time for our women members to explore careers
in non-traditional but good-paying jobs. Work opportunities are plentiful for all so now is the time to reconsider!
Have you considered a career in construction?
Provincial and federal governments and the Canadian Building Trades are offering many incentives to women to encourage them
to get their trades training.
Through Teamsters 213’s affiliation with the Canadian Building Trades, Teamster women can apply for ACTIMS Women In Trades
Women looking for a career change could consider obtaining their Class 1 Driver Licence. This qualification is in high demand
by employers. The process takes about six weeks and although course cost is a factor (approx. $4,500) it will open the door to
many driving opportunities. Alternatively, a class 3 or 5 license with a clean driver’s abstract is all that is needed to drive a fiveton
truck – also an area where a shortage of qualified drivers is common.
Another option for women is to speak up in their own workplaces and express interest in learning new
technology or training to operate new equipment. Some jobs that used to require heavy manual labour are now
automated which means that women and men can do the work successfully.
Start exploring job prospects with the various companies represented by Teamsters 213. The workplace
status quo is changing – and our Teamsters Women will lead the way!
Special thanks to Josh Marola in the Dues Office for his assistance in gathering the data for this article.