The bias facing women within the construction industry is not a new topic for our blog. Our previous blog posts have discussed the dismal statistics. But there have also been some successes. This blog post focussed on the success that women such as Lucy Eng are having within the industry.
A recent article posted on an American home improvement website also chose to highlight the success women are having within the construction industry.
This week, closer to home in Christchurch, CPIT Carpentry graduate Semiko Tallott-Stuart has been awarded the New Zealand Institute of Building Award for the top carpentry student and the He Toki ki te Rika Supreme Award, resulting in her being the first woman to be awarded a major apprenticeship with Hawkins.
Tallot-Stuart is clearly an inspiration to other women; in the article she comments:
“I think that women everywhere should be open to this career. It’s not as male dominated as it was a few years ago.”
I have just joined the construction law team in Kensington Swan’s Wellington office as a summer clerk. The team nationally has several strong and successful women. As a young woman starting my legal career, it is invaluable to be working in a team where women are in senior positions as partners and senior associates. Having female role models is essential for women starting out in the industry. It is helpful both for planning future career goals and in showing that being a woman is not a barrier to success.
While construction law is not often discussed at university as a field for a career, it is clear that there are many opportunities as the field diversifies and the entrenched gender stereotypes that exist within construction begin to be broken down.