Local women electricians gathered recently to discuss ways to bring more women into the electrical and other trades. Among the group were Elizabeth Fields and Susan Flashman; Fields is a former Building Futures graduate now entering her third year in the IBEW/NECA Apprenticeship School, while Flashman is an IBEW retiree. The committee of some two dozen IBEW Local 26 women has been meeting for several months to form the local's women committee. The Feb. 23rd meeting at Busboys and Poets, led by instructors Greta Nicholson and Ina Smith, “empowered participants and was a wonderful way to create and strengthen bonds among the women mechanics, apprentices and residential trainees,” who rarely see each other outside work, said Client Services Coordinator Sylvia Casaro-Dietert. The group discussions touched some critical issues for all women working in the field like code of conduct, and appropriate work clothing, as well as the importance of lobbying Congress to keep their pensions intact and to regulate proper and accessible bathrooms for women in construction. The committee is also looking at different ways to engage with the community and give back. “CSA will collaborate with them to promote recruitment and retention of women in the trades,” added Casaro-Dietert.
DC LABORFest 2021