Diversity deficiency in construction

Published:  17 September, 2009

BRISTOL: The construction industry has a long way to go to achieve diversity, according to a report commissioned by the Construction Industry Council (CIC) from the University of the West of England.

A team from UWE's School of the Built and Natural Environment – Ann de Graft-Johnson, Rachel Sara, Fiona Gleed and Nada Brkljac - compared statistics on diversity in the construction industry with data from other professions such as medicine and law.

Ann de Graft Johnson said, “Our research revealed a lack of available information on diversity in the construction industry. Both the legal and medical sectors are much more advanced in embracing equality and diversity in their workforce and have monitoring structures in place.”

The report found that the construction industry is disproportionately white, male and able-bodied. It has led the CIC, which represents the sector's professional institutions, to call on the industry to address its poor performance on diversity.

The research found that, despite legislation covering the prevention of discrimination only 13.5% employees in the construction workforce are women, 2% are from black, asian and minority ethnic (BAME) groups, and 14% have some form of impairment.

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