Child care takes center stage at Women in Construction Forum
By Gabriela Rojas
Family Support Manager
Children’s Council of San Francisco
I recently had the honor of participating in a panel discussion at the Empowering Women to Build our Future: Women in Construction Expo, as part of Children’s Council’s partnership with the Public Utilities Commission (PUC).
The sold-out Expo drew over 250 women, ranging from construction laborers to union leaders and business owners, to insurance and public relations professionals. Mayor London Breed, Senator Scott Wiener, Assemblyman David Chu, Supervisor Sandra Lee Fewer and Supervisor Shamann Walton were in attendance, speaking in support of women in the construction field.
Some of the themes of the conference included child care, transportation, living wages and the need for women to participate at all levels of the nearly $525 billion construction industry in California.
The panel I participated in included Ingrid Mezquita, Director of the San Francisco Office of Early Care & Education (OECE) and Rosamunda Ayala, Assistant Director of Charity Cultural Services Center.
Together we discussed the pivotal roles our organizations play for families in San Francisco, and highlighted how Children’s Council’s pilot program with PUC and OECE is addressing child care needs for a cohort of women day laborers in the Bayview.
Every day, these hard-working mothers face challenges including reliable transportation and a lack of child care in their neighborhood, particularly providers who can support their very early work hours.
I was pleased to introduce attendees to my Children’s Council colleague Donna Edings, who has been the point of contact for families for this pilot program and a major part of its success.
It was inspiring to be among so many trailblazing women and I was thrilled to represent Children’s Council. We look forward to participating in this conference again in the future.