Call the Plumbers Union QLD for information on the Women in Plumbing Program, if you are female and interested in an apprenticeship in Plumbing or Sprinkler Fitting. You will need to be fit, up for early starts, like to work with your hands and tools and be keen to learn new skills.
Earning $$ while you train is a great part of an apprenticeship along with a getting a great career with a licensed trade. Entering a male dominated industry can also be challenging but our first 10 female apprentices are doing extremely well.
ABOUT THE PROGRAM
Some time back the Plumbers Union identified that there were few women entering the plumbing trade, while with changes to technology and work practices there seemed to be no substantial reason for this to be the case.
Having applied to the Department of Education Employment and the Arts for funding, this 5 year program is to assist women with information about the plumbing trade and to assist women into apprenticeships where opportunities are available.
Work Experience can also be arranged to ensure women are really able to test their own suitability for a plumbing or sprinkler fitting apprenticeship.
Ongoing networking and support is also a key component of this program.
For employers, advice and support is also provided to assist with the introduction of who will be in most instances their first female apprentice.
TESTIMONIALS - From Employers
GRAHAM MACKRILL AMCA Air-conditioning & Mechanical Contractors Association of Qld
AMCA supports the Women In Plumbing initiative as it is a genuine endeavour to modernise the face of the workforce. Every vibrant modern workplace has a balance of participants that make up the diversity of those industries.
Reports that male participation in full-time employment are continuously declining should be sending alarm bells ringing to employers where workforces are currently and traditionally dominated by men.
The experiences of our members who have engaged in the WIP initiative have been positive.
There is no doubt that the initial shift in balance of the workforce challenges some traditional stereo-typical views and perceptions, but these challenges are there to be resolved.
Industries who are seeking to tap into a wider employment market pool for their future workforce will meet many challenges to be attractive to that broader opportunity including changes in technology and work practices.
As women represent at least 50% of the available work-force, we will remain supportive of initiatives such as WIP as it represents a solution to a long -term skilled labour shortage.
In a work-place where higher levels of technical and problem-solving skills are in demand, individuals who can contribute at both an intellectual and physical capacity will find themselves in demand regardless of gender. We congratulate the CEPU Plumbing division and the AMCA Members who have embraced this opportunity.
JANINE HORROCKS General Manager
As one of the few women in management in the fire protection industry I know all to well what a challenge it can be working in the historically male dominated world of construction. Placing a female apprentice sprinkler fitter within our company has been on my wish list for over a decade. The Women in Plumbing work experience program made the dream a reality. It provided a safe and informative environment for the potential candidates to explore various employers and work types alongside other like minded women. It also made the whole process of finding the right candidate a breeze for the employer by preparing the candidates both mentally and with all the right insurance, blue card and basic work gear. At FirePro we cannot speak highly enough of our female apprentice; in less than a year she has added another tier of professionalism to our business and we look forward to accessing the Women In Plumbing program for potential apprentices in the future.
3rd year apprentice
A plumbing apprenticeship has provided me a stable and secure career future, with a sense of pride and achievement. I had wanted to get out of my comfort zone and take on a physically and mentally challenging career. It is also important to be breaking down the barriers of stereotypes and discrimination. And I love the work.
WOMEN IN SPRINKLER FITTING
WOMEN IN SPRINKLER FITTING Annie Cowling
The Plumbers Union is proud to have recruited and placed the first women into Sprinkler Fitting trade apprenticeships in Queensland.
Lil, Lisa, Maree and Cassandra are settling in well and picking up the skills required quickly. Like most of us in this industry they appreciate the good wages.
Other comments from these apprentices are that they enjoy the variety of work sites, early starts and learning different skills. The difficult and dirty work is no problem and even sometimes it is acknowledged that the stuff that may appear dangerous can be exciting. They are also getting job satisfaction and stability, and ultimately it is equivalent to getting into and doing a university degree. How good is that?
They also reckon that whilst some of the guys were hesitant about them initially, they have been working with some great teams.