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The goal of Sisters in the Brotherhood is to create a network of active members that provides avenues for women to eliminate barriers to their success and to promote an increase in the number and diversity of women in the UBC. We advocate for member involvement to strengthen the union and for the unity and retention of all members.
Ever since October 1935, when Margaret Ellings became the first woman initiated into the United Brotherhood of Carpenters, UBC women have been strong and active members. The establishment of a women’s committee within the United Brotherhood of Carpenters is one of the most important developments in the union’s recent history.
An era of more concerted action began in 1998, when the first local Sisters in the Brotherhood committee was formed. Since then, UBC women have found common ground with one another at networking events and training sessions, and have expanded to dozens of committees with a wide range of activities.
As committed union members, SIB committees participate in local union meetings and work on drives to protect area standards. Women serve as Council delegates, ensuring that issues unique to women members are part of Council discussions. SIB committees take part in many local and national volunteer projects as well as in outreach to other organizations on a range of labor issues
SIB committees are active politically as well. Members turn out to support UBC positions at rallies and campaign events. They appear and testify at zoning, planning, and other public meetings to advocate for union projects. They run phone banks, do literature walks, and other work and for electoral candidates and ballot issues.
Members recruit apprentices, mentor new members, and encourage each other to improve and maintain their skills and knowledge so they continue to thrive as industry professionals.
Because increasing diversity in the construction industry has long been a goal of the UBC leadership, SIB encourages members across the continent to attend educational conferences and to partner with other organizations to address workforce goals for women on public and private construction projects.