New B.C. program aims to improve worksite conduct and diversity

by sadia_badhon | March 12, 2019 2:11 pm

The British Columbia construction industry has introduced the Builders Code to improve jobsite conduct standards and worker retention.
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A comprehensive program has been launched to address British Columbia’s skilled labour shortage by reducing harassment, bullying, and hazing on construction worksites. The Builders Code[2] defines an acceptable worksite and provides employers with tools, training, and resources to improve and promote safe and productive behaviour.

Led by the BC Construction Association[3] (BCCA), the program includes the Industry Training Authority, WorkSafeBC, LNG Canada, BC Construction Safety Alliance, Employee Benefits Trust, Minerva Foundation of B.C., and four Regional Construction Associations. The Builders Code has a ‘10×10’ goal to ensure 10 per cent of the provinces skilled workforce is comprised of tradeswomen by 2028.

A Builders Code worksite will seek to be free from behaviour that threatens the stability of work conditions including job performance, health, well-being, safety, productivity, and the efficiency of workers. It also seeks to improve the retention of tradeswomen in the province’s construction sector.

British Columbia faces a skills shortage of 7900 workers, and tradeswomen comprise only 4.7 per cent of the skilled workforce. Although women, youth, and other equity-seeking groups are entering construction trades at a higher rate than in the past, retention rates remain low. First-year retention rates for women apprentices have anecdotally been estimated at less than 50 per cent. By comparison, first-year retention rates for men are estimated at 70 per cent.

Throughout this year, the Builders Code partners will make equity and diversity a corporate leadership priority for construction employers by rolling out expanded resources and services.

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