The number of women workers in the construction industry remains small compared to male labor. In Porto Alegre, according to STICC (Trade Union of Workers in the Civil Construction of Porto Alegre), about 270 women chose construction as a profession. However, in the metropolitan area, this number reaches 7,000 between formal and informal jobs. The universe of men and women working in Porto Alegre is approximately 150 thousand.
On past March 8, International Women’s Day, STICC through inspection teams within the construction works, made awareness meetings on the importance of women in the construction sector. In addition, they delivered a lipstick to each women worker.
To Mara Oliveira, 37 years old, who works in the Ruben Berta Condominium at the capital, the number of women workers is likely increasing even more. "Step by step, we are taking spaces that were mainly men’s" she said. "At first it was kind of weird, but now I share with everyone that construction is my chosen profession", said Jessica Amaral, electrician worker, 25 years old.
"I came from Haiti three years ago and I chose Porto Alegre to live in. Here, as in other cities, there is prejudice against women who do manual construction labor" said René Mislene, of Haiti who is part of the union's inspection team.