In 1975 employment in the majority of trades’ areas was dominated by men, and this fact, associated with a significant wage disparity, generated considerable social debate at that time. A number of newspaper articles in New Zealand highlighted the lack of female participation in traditionally male occupations. Using an intensive literature review and statistical analysis of available records, this paper investigates whether the numbers of women employed as plumbers in New Zealand have changed between 1975 and the present day. Having established that the proportion of female plumbers is almost unchanged during this period, this research then compares this information with data gathered from other trades and exposes the widespread nature of this trend across traditionally male dominated industries. This data is also compared to gender-based employment rates in the non-trades professions. The potential causes underlying this tendency are discussed. Finally the paper reflects on what, if anything, could to be done to alter this situation.
Cruickshank, G. (2015). The participation of women employed in traditionally male dominated occupations including plumbing: 1975-2013. Unitec ePress Occasional and Discussion Paper Series (1).
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