Shannon Horner, Steelworker in Ontario.
For women workers in the steel industry and all heavy
health and safety is one of the main concerns. It's a male dominated
environment and sometimes it is not up to the times in terms of the
inclusion of women workers in health and safety plans. We are working
towards solutions but it's a slow moving train. I think that women
provide great value, are an incredible asset in industrial settings. We
bring different viewpoints to this kind of industry and provide good
role models for our daughters and our sisters.
of the things that concerns women workers is humanizing the industry
and the world. We have some different perspectives, bring what are
called soft skills, to the industry. I'm not saying men don't have soft
skills but women do focus more on issues like mental health. The steel
industry is not known for being a very nurturing industry
but the world needs change, needs humanizing.
and safety in industrial settings is complex and there are
problems. Health includes mental, emotional and physical; you have to
be healthy in all three to be productive and safe. Historically mental
and emotional health has not been given high priority. The world is
changing and we need to make changes and look at people holistically.
Mental health has to be a priority globally. Women are playing an
active role in helping humanity evolve, in humanizing society.
I look at the example of how health care workers, who are
women, are under-valued although they play a vital role. I am a single
mom with four kids including one with complex special needs and I know
the value of the health care workers that we turn to in times of
crisis, like the pandemic. I think the human spirit is resilient and
together we can envision change in the world and bring it about.
This article was published in
March 8, 2021 - No.