Health and Safety Recruitment

The roles that women have performed in the workplace have changed very much in the last 20 years, starting with the percentage of women making up the workforce. These numbers have increased, despite the challenges of inequalities, wage gaps, and glass ceilings that they have been forced to endure over time.
In years past, these challenges were tolerated due to socioeconomic needs, as a means of support, despite how little they earned, and how oppressed their growth was. Women faced the challenge head on, and because of the path they laid back then, women in the workforce are winning more today.

Women are taking on more diverse roles, and have prospered regardless of the obstacles. But an area that could stand a stronger presence, is in the field of health and safety. Why is there a need to have more women in health safety roles though? Because the industry has called for it, veterans and newcomers alike.

For a long time women have struggled to be heard, and treated fairly in this occupation. Being demeaned by their peers, and not respected by their employees, based solely on their gender. Being told to have a sense of humor about it, while they endure the trials from the job has steered potential stars from progressing. It has become a rarity to see a woman in a leadership role in this industry.

So, many women have discussed how they must grow a "thick skin", and a "toughen up attitude" just to be accepted. Through persistence, education and knowing that the jobs they have taken on, have had a powerful, positive impact on the lives on many people became a driving force for many to succeed. Women need more leadership roles in this industry to continue making that impact, and to show the world that this sector of the workforce demands respect.

Studies have shown that 70 percent of women who currently hold positions in occupational safety and health leadership roles, started out in areas completely outside the realm of safety and health, due in part because the positions in health and safety that they sought, were designed to scare women from having a go at them by the men who preceded them.

Support and Networking

Through many interviews, and many studies, there is a consistent reckoning that successful women are preaching to the up and comers, "find a mentor", and to the current leaders, "be a mentor!" Working with associations to network with other professionals is a must. And those that have achieved success must pass that knowledge on to others. Those who seek this occupation as a future must attach themselves to an established professional and be open to learning from the uphill battles their predecessors have endured.
Although the challenges from years past have diminished somewhat, there are still far too many out there. Only by growing this field with serious professionals dedicated to making a difference, can the culture make the positive turn it needs. In a study from Safety and Health Magazine in September 2016, Rose McMurray stated, "It's a great profession. We need the next generation worrying about others and seeing their commitment to others, a way to make them safer".

This community can only be successful by learning from the negative attitudes they have faced, and develop the positive ones that helped them become established. The encouragement from these women who lead in this industry have impacted many women who without it, may have chosen not to go in this field, and that would have eliminated the positive impact that they have had.

The consensus is clear, working with outreach programs, networking and mentoring creates the support that the next generation needs to carry the torch, and become successful. To assist in promoting this career avenue, there are many websites to visit. We invite you to invest some of your time looking into them for clarity and motivation. Most importantly, if you have found success, give back to others, if you seek success, don't hold back, reach out and find a mentor.