Currently less than one in 700 of electricians are women

The Electrical Contractors’ Association (ECA) has launched a campaign to overcome the chronic under-representation of women in the electrical contracting sector.

Former ECA president Diane Johnson – who is spearheading the campaign – told Building just 0.14% of the electricians are women.

The ‘Wired for Success’ campaign – backed by housing association L&Q and contractors Axis, Mullalley and Smith & Byford – will provide women with a tailored two-year training course.

The initiative is targeted at disadvantaged women and will initially train up 12 long-term unemployed L&Q residents.

Launching the campaign, Johnson said: “We need to get women into the industry. This training will give these women a skill for life – we are currently neglecting people.”

Participant Julie Dickman said she had been unemployed for 12 years prior to joining the ‘Wired for Success’ initiative.

Dickman said: “Most of my family work in the building trades – I’ve always been interested and I wish we’d had this scheme when I was younger.

“When you’ve been unemployed for 12 years you lose a lot of confidence, but I’m really enjoying being involved in this scheme.”

The scheme will give women a qualification in domestic installation. It is tailored to provide flexible training for women that fits around other responsibilities – L&Q is paying the womens’ childcare costs.