by Jan Goller

Only 9 % of the people working in the construction sector are women. But working in this sector still means having to face lots of dangers. To promote the social dialogue between employers and unions, the Construction Labor Foundation was born in 1992. In the celebration of the 25th anniversary of the foundation, Madrid’s mayor Manuela Carmena declared the will to establish a recognition of innovation. This should avoid the loss of lives during the work.  Recently, the campaign #yotambienconstruyo (#IalsoConstruct) has been launched to make visible the more 115,000 women who work in this field.

Aims are more safety and women in the sector

In the context of the foundation’s anniversary, Carmena has attended the commemoration of the first quarter of the century of the  foundation.  Its main aims are to get a more professional sector, insurance, with a better training and future. The foundation offers 46 centers in Spain with an annual average of 70,000 workers.  They receive a training in one of 300 disciplines in total. Moreover, the mayor offered the workers the municipal service-learning line. It is an educational proposal that combines the learning of contents, competences and values ​​with the accomplishment of community tasks.

I put at your disposal this municipal line. My objective is that students come to give service to this foundation and to mix with the construction workers in training, asserts Carmena.

No one should die while building

Carmena proposed the creation of a recognition to the innovative systems that allow to reduce the number of victims in the sector.

Like we know it from prizes for cultural creation, I think we should establish other prizes for new techniques. My aim is that no one dies to make this wonderful spectacle that is building a reality.

A drama, the loss of lives, which Carmena first faced as a lawyer, then as a magistrate and now as mayor. In these four years she had to go to four collapses, of which three resulted in fatalities.

A new campaign #yotambienconstruyo (#ibuildalso)

Carmena paid homage to Matilde Ucelay. It is the first architect of Spain who, due to her firm republican commitment, was condemned in 1940 to perpetual disqualification for public, managerial and trustworthy positions.  As a result, she never received public commissions and her first projects could not bear his signature.

This campaign is a reminder to a pioneer and has as its purpose making visible the women working in the sector. Only 115,000 women work in the construction sector – which represents 9 % of the total numer of workers.

An industry traditionally linked to men

From masons, crane operators, architects, engineers or painters – all the people working in those professions- wants to encourage this campaign. In this industry nearly one work men. In addition, the foundation leads the European project Women can Build since 2017  to achieve a more inclusive industry.