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Canadian women thriving in fire protection industry

Canadian women thriving in fire protection industry
CLASSIC FIRE + LIFE SAFETY — Women working at Classic Fire + Life safety share stories about their careers in the fire protection industry, a rapidly growing field. Over the past decade, the company has welcomed dozens of new technicians to their team, with an increased number of them being women.

NORTH YORK, ONT. — Women are increasingly finding rewarding careers in the fire protection industry, states a recent release from Classic Fire + Life Safety.

Classic Fire + Life Safety is a total fire and life safety company servicing the needs of organizations and institutions large and small, private and public. 

Over the past 10 years, the company has welcomed dozens of new technicians to their team and  an increasing number of them are women.

“Like many of my new colleagues, I fell in love with the idea of contributing to safe working environments and, beyond that, to helping reduce the number of accidents, injuries and tragic deaths that might impact people in or through someone’s place of work,” said Melissa Diaz, the company’s newly hired vice-president of human resources, in a statement.

Finding mentorship is another challenge that women in male-dominated industries often struggle with. 

“I have gotten that stereotype from other contractors that because I’m a woman they don’t believe I can do it, that I’m not strong enough,” said Olivia Schouten, a fire alarm technician trainee at Classic Fire + Life Safety’s Toronto office. “But the guys that I work with here at Classic FLS have been great. They’re willing to teach me and let me learn. They don’t look at me as someone that can’t do the job.”

Jillian Webb, a fire protection assistant from the Toronto branch had never considered fire protection until a family friend told her about the program at Seneca.

“I started looking into the Seneca program and the industry,” says Webb. “I saw that it was a rapidly growing industry, so I decided to take the course. It was not something I would have originally considered. When you think of fire protection you think of fire fighters and that’s it. As a booming industry, I saw it as a great opportunity with job security.”

The company is looking to hire up to 40 more employees by the end of this year across all their Ontario and Manitoba branches.

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