Just 1.7 percent of employed carpenters are women, according to a 2014 Department of Labor statistics report on “nontraditional” occupations and not much has changed over past decades. Why are so few carpenters women? One thought is that there aren’t enough resources to let women know they can be carpenters, let alone support to help them stay in the industry once employed. The industry doesn’t market these opportunities to women which often have excellent pay scales. Women don’t know anything about them. They don’t know what these jobs entail. They don’t know how much they pay. They don’t know why they should be interested in these jobs. So most apprenticeship programs get very small numbers of female candidates....

Women have fought to be considered competent, to vote, to be hired for the same jobs as men and to be promoted at those jobs. And we’ve come a long way since 1972. Recent studies however suggest that, at least when it comes to science, gender bias is still going strong. One study revealed that scientists' applications for a lab manager position were identical except for the name. Some were male names; others were female names. Here’s the takeaway from Sean Carroll at Discover Magazine: “Female applicants were rated lower than men on the measured scales of competence, hireability and mentoring (whether the scientist would be willing to mentor this student). Both male and female scientists on the hiring panel rated the female applicants lower....

In 1972 there were no women commercial airline pilots.  Look how far women have come over the many decades in their access to careers once held by men. 

Mary Gregg, Syracuse, New York 1972

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January 9, 2017

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