In Chile, women make up just 8.3% of workers in the mining industry; at 14%, Teck’s workforce in Chile exceeds the industry average. However, knowing the importance of inclusion and diversity, we doubled down on a cultural change with a gender perspective to better support and attract women into our workforce.
“In an industry that has traditionally maintained a male-dominated workforce, we recognized that a cultural shift that better supported a female workforce would have tremendous benefits,” said Chris Dechert, Vice President, South America. “By being more inclusive and diverse, we are able to come up with better perspectives and more innovative approaches to our work, and attract a broader pool of candidates.”
Women in Teck
Chris worked with Diversity Development Consulting to review Chile’s operations, projects and corporate office processes to identify obstacles related to diversity and inclusion. The result was a recognition that women, not only at Teck in Chile but across all Teck operations, wanted a women’s support network. Thus, Women in Teck (WIT) was born.
Led by Amparo Cornejo, Vice President, Sustainability and Corporate Affairs, Chile, WIT’s goal is to provide a support network for the different labour and industry challenges, offer information on job opportunities and participate in industry events for women.
“WIT has been tremendously successful in centralizing efforts that support women in our company and provide them with information and opportunities they otherwise would have missed out on,” said Amparo. “There’s still lots of work ahead of us, but we have a strong foundation now to help support gender diversity not only at Teck, but across the industry.”
In 2018, WIT organized a day of reflection for International Women's Day across Chile operations; brought in Chile's first female Aerospace Engineer, Karin Saavedra, to talk about technology and innovation on Mining Day; and established a working relationship with the Women and Mining Working Group of the Chilean Ministry of Mining and the Chilean Ministry of Women and Gender Equity. Following these events, Teck in Chile was acknowledged by the foundation PROhumana, for its commitment to gender equity.
WIT continues to work on the programming of activities for 2019, with a mission to further enhance gender diversity in the company.
Learn more about inclusion and diversity at Teck.
First Published on March 13, 2019