NEXGEN Builders Champion Mentor-Award: Desiree Smith, Carpenters Local 27 floor installer
Desiree started her career in construction through the Women in Skilled Trades Program, is presently working for Local 27 and has just recently completed her apprenticeship.
She is a founding member of the Ontario Building Construction Tradeswomen, a group that advocates for women, empowering them in the construction industry, providing mentoring, lending support and offering sisterly love.
Her nominator said Desiree “builds up our confidence, checks up on mentees, lend us tools and provides a listening ear. Through her networks among other females within construction trades, we’re welcomed with open arms to the groups she has invited us to be a part of.”
NexGen Builders Champion – Employer: Daniels Corporation
Daniels Corporation believes as a developer/builder the company has a powerful platform to lead systemic change, from its internal work such as training, hiring and advancement of employees to developments where the company integrates opportunities for local economic development by members of equity deserving groups to external relations where they are actively participating in industry initiatives to drive DEI and combat racism and discrimination.
Creating Real Apprenticeships for Toronto (CRAFT) participants, the increased engagement is in the form of weekly check ins and a post program debrief and feedback session. We have found program completion rates for CRAFT have improved with the increased engagement.
Leading on Diversity Award – Owner-Client: Dream Unlimited
In 2020 Dream Unlimited established a Diversity, Inclusion & Advancement team which includes leaders and employees from of all levels, regions, and backgrounds throughout the organization. The team is building expertise and responsibility to making a difference and having an impact on diversity issues within the organization and throughout the communities in which Dream operates.
Last year they unveiled a social procurement strategy that is one of the most ambitious in Canada. By supporting equity-seeking groups and creating new pathways for local, independent and socially responsible businesses, its targets and strategies provide clear private-sector leader to support diversity through real estate and development activities.
Leading on Diversity Contractor Award – Mosaic Transit Group
Mosaic Transit Group is leading and delivering the community benefits program with construction of the Finch West LRT line in northwest Toronto. The program delivers a full range of jobs, employment supports, outreach and community engagement activities and actively seeks ways to maximize its procurement spend in the community it serves.
Also, hiring policies ensure inclusiveness and when online interviews became more prominent during the COVID-19 pandemic, all candidates who required support or accommodation were provided with alternative methods for interviewing, safely and quickly.
Mosaic has allocated more than $14 million on a wide variety of procurement activities within the Finch West area, which strengthen Diversity & Inclusion at Mosaic and throughout the community. This past quarter included more than $1.2 million paid to local shops, contractors, and vendors in the area.
Leading on Diversity Union Award – Carpenters Local 27
Local 27’s membership, staff and executive board is one of the most diverse in Canada for any construction union. Black leaders of Carpenters Local 27 have been active in TCBN’s Ready to Build Program, the NexGen Builders Mentoring program for Black youth, and its Community Host outreach program targeted to women, newcomers, and other racialized groups.
Also, the Canadian District United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America, supported by Local 27, is beginning the process of developing a national standard to guide diversity and inclusion in apprenticeship programs.
Local 27 is advancing diversity and equality on the jobsite and has built a very diverse workforce, tackling both systemic and anti-Black racism.