It will take 200 years to achieve gender equality among construction workers

According to a new study, at the current rate of growth, the number of women in the building industry will not equal men until 2194.

Readers of the Advantage Contraction Insurance blog will no doubt be familiar with the scale of the gender pay gap for construction workers. Last year, we wrote that: The stats are damning; women make up only 11% of the construction workforce, and just 2% of tradespeople. What’s more, these figures have remained the same since 1997, suggesting that there hasn’t been any change over the past couple of decades which may encourage women to consider a career in the industry.

And according to a new study, at the current rate of growth, the number of women in the building industry will not equal men until 2194.

As reported by the Metro, Trade union GMB, says its research shows that just one in eight construction workers are female – the lowest share of any industrial group.

The union says it has arranged a summit with the major construction companies working on the Hinkley Point nuclear power project to discuss the lack of women in construction.

National officer Jude Brimble said:

‘Our analysis is a sobering reminder of the scale of the challenge facing the industry.

‘As a union, we are committed to advancing the cause of gender equality in all industries.

‘That’s why we have arranged our ground-breaking Hinkley Point summit, where we will discuss with the major players how to increase the number of women in the construction of the project.’

Angela Rayner, shadow education secretary, commented:

‘These figures show the scale of the challenge, but major state-backed projects like Hinkley Point are a chance for the Government to step in and take action.

‘Ministers should tell us how they will ensure that the opportunities they present will be open to all.’

While efforts continue to close the gender pay gap in construction, things are moving much more swiftly in the world of property investment. In an Advantage blog earlier this year, we looked at a report in the Economist on how much of the wealth transferred in coming decades will end up in female hands. They reported that although much is being written about gender inequalities in everything from health outcomes to pay and promotions “one gap is gradually narrowing: that in wealth. As money managers seek to attract and serve rich women, and as those women express their values through their portfolios, the impact will be felt within the investment industry and beyond.”

We’ll be back soon with a new blog and will continue to bring you a digested read on the big issues in construction – from pay to pollution to the nation’s current construction hotspots, social housing and emerging trends in our sector.

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Advantage Home Construction Insurance (AHCI) provides structural defects insurance – operating nationally with offices in Warrington, London and Birmingham – offering development-related insurances and a service designed to give customers peace of mind.

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