Tamara Crabbe, a graduate of Douglas College’s essential skills driver training program, said she is thankful for the training she received to become a commercial truck driver. Through new government funding, 18 women and 11 newcomers to Canada will receive this training. Miranda Gathercole Langley Times

VIDEO: Province commits $765K to commercial driver training

Funding will allow 18 women and 11 newcomers to Canada to earn their Class 1 licences

March 19 was a day that changed Tamara Crabbe’s life.

A high school drop-out who had worked in construction for 10 years, it was on this day that she started a commercial driving program at Douglas College.

“I was sick of watching time pass by and not being happy doing what I was doing,” she said.

“It was time to make my future brighter. To be given this opportunity is not something I have taken lightly. Doing this course has given me the chance to have a financially stable future, and to enjoy the career that I am immersed in.”

Crabbe is one of 18 women in the YWCA Changing Gears program to benefit from this training, thanks to funding from the province.

On June 7, Garry Begg, MLA for Surrey-Guilford, announced that the province is committing $764,800 through the Community and Employer Partnerships program for 29 people — including 18 women and 11 newcomers to Canada — to go through the essential skills driver training at Douglas College to earn their Class 1 licences.

More than 14,000 job openings in trucking are expected in the next 10 years, along with 4,000 for transit drivers.

“This truly is an emerging field,” said Begg, who made the announcement at Valley Driving School in Langley.

“It’s a growing industry, one that can provide each of you with many opportunities. While these two projects offer the industry qualified staff, they also help to create more diversity in the sector, and that’s important … Diversity is evident and it is going to make the industry much stronger.”

Women currently represent 3 per cent of truck drivers in Canada, but these numbers are starting to increase, added Tina Hurd, program manager for YWCA Metro Vancouver, which provides training for women to enter male-dominated industries.

“We’re women, this is barrier going into the industry — it’s real, it’s happening,” she said. “And the women are facing stereotypes, so they’re gender based … Dealing with their confidence from their employers or potential employers, from their co-workers, friends, family — they don’t have that encouragement that they necessarily need to get in the industry. And that’s why our program is great, because it provides that opportunity for women.”



miranda@langleytimes.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Bevy of remarkable birthdays celebrated in Aldergrove

Maudie MacPherson (age 101), Vera Banner (91) and Alice Utas (95)

Pond hockey banned in public parks under updated Township bylaw

Public spaces bylaw imposes new restrictions on smoking, possession of drug paraphernalia, geocaching and more

Golfers tee up for Langley Memorial Hospital

Langley Memorial Hospital Foundation’s 22nd annual charity golf tournament sells out

Election 2018: Kim Richter withdraws from mayor’s race, runs for council instead

In a Facebook post, Richter announced she will seek another term on Township council

More office, retail space planned for Willoughby Town Centre

Fourth phase now underway as Township council grants third and final reading

B.C. wildfires 2018: Hazy skies impacting crews in spotting new fires

18,000 people are on an evacuation alert, with 3,000 homes under an evacuation order

Minister optimistic after 2 days of Columbia River Treaty negotiations

Canadian and U.S. officials met in Nelson Wednesday and Thursday to discuss future of the treaty

Man dies in B.C. police cell while awaiting court hearing

An independent investigation is underway after a man died while in Penticton police custody Aug. 16

RCMP appeal for tips, dashcam footage in German tourist shooting west of Calgary

The Durango crashed into the ditch after the shooting near the Goodstoney Rodeo Centre

2 nurses attacked at B.C. psych hospital, union calls for in-unit security

PHSA says that in-unit guards would do more harm than good

Former B.C. optician won’t be jailed for sexually assaulting minor

Kenneth Pilkington sentenced to 24 months’ probation for offence three decades ago

Mt. Hicks fire 15% contained, continues to burn north of Agassiz

The fire, suspected to be caused by a vehicle with a flat tire, not threatening any structures

Police responding to ‘unfolding’ incident in Maple Ridge suburb

Helicopter, dog team, guns drawn and 16 police vehicles at Maple Ridge property

Red Cross now accepting donations for those impacted by B.C. wildfires

The Canadian Red Cross is asking for help now and in the weeks and months ahead.

Most Read