This Program Aims to Create More Opportunities for Indigenous Women in Skilled Trades

Native Women’s Association of Canada

According to Statistics Canada, women only represent 7.4 per cent of trade workers across Canada — with an even slimmer margin being Indigenous women.

To help encourage more Indigenous women, Two Spirit, transgender, and gender-diverse people to enter the trades, the Native Women’s Association of Canada (NWAC) in partnership with the Government of Canada’s Apprenticeship Service has created the National Apprenticeships Program (NAP).

Helping to kickstart a range of careers, signing up for NAP gives you access to an exclusive job board where eligible candidates can apply for apprenticeship positions. This gives you a chance to work with businesses that prioritize diversity and inclusion while getting an incredible opportunity to build your skills!

Native Women’s Association of Canada

NWAC’S NAP supports 39 construction and manufacturing Red Seal trades, formally known as the Interprovincial Standards Red Seal Program, which sets common standards to assess the skills of tradespeople across Canada.

Their website also helps you explore different skilled trades based on your interests, whether that’s using tools and working outside as a Bricklayer or getting to explore your creativity as a Welder and Ironworker.

There’s also a chance for small- and medium-sized businesses to receive a $10,000 grant incentive per position, up to $20,000 annually, to hire first-year Red Seal Apprentices.

The purpose of the NAP is to help improve the socio-economic condition of disadvantaged groups. Because of this, only users who identify as Indigenous people and as women or 2SLGBTQIA+ persons are eligible to register. If you don’t qualify for this program, there are similar government-funded programs directed at different audiences.

Starting a career in a unionized skilled trade means you’ll be getting a competitive wage and incremental raises as your skill levels increase. There are also plenty of entry points, whether you’re coming out of high school, currently in a pre-apprenticeship training program or have previous experience in the industry you’re going into.

If you’re an Indigenous woman or 2SLGBTQ+ individual looking to start an exciting career in an in-demand field, you can register for the National Apprenticeships Program now and explore all the opportunities available to you.