Maine Gov. Janet Mills: Women ‘Belong’ in Nation’s 2nd Deadliest Job (Construction)

Craig Bannister | May 8, 2024

Women “belong” in the nation’s second-deadliest occupation, but sexist barriers are keeping them out, Maine’s Democrat Governor Janet Mills declared Monday, announcing an executive order aimed to insert more women into the dangerous, male-dominated field.

Gov. Mills made the declaration at a press event touting her executive order:

“There are qualified women across Maine who belong in fields dominated by men and I want to knock down the barriers that are keeping them from pursuing these good paying jobs in construction with good Maine employers.”

“Occupational segregation creates inequities in the labor market,” the executive order says, issuing directives it says will combat “work environments that are free from discrimination and harassment and other impediments to full employment.”

The executive order also vows to tackle “occupational segregation” purportedly preventing women from working in construction:

“Maine is committed to addressing this historical gender wage gap and occupational segregation and increasing our labor force participation by encouraging women to enter non-traditional jobs, including male-dominated jobs in construction.”

Construction is the second-deadliest occupation, both in terms of raw numbers and fatality rate, according to the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

The vastly male-dominated occupation (96.8% of onsite construction workforce are men, compared to 52.7% of national workforce) is also extremely dangerous, in terms of non-fatal injuries, BLS reports:

“Within the private construction industry, nonfatal workplace falls, slips, and trips that required at least one day away from work occurred at an annualized rate of 31.5 per 10,000 full-time workers in the 2-year 2021–2022 period. The rate across all private industry was 22.6. Nonfatal falls to a lower level that required at least one day away from work happened at an annualized rate of 13.9 in the construction industry, while the overall rate for private industry was 4.6.”

Thus, while it’s debatable whether the “shortage of qualified workers in the construction industry” claimed in the executive order is caused by sexist barriers, it’s axiomatic that the shortage is exacerbated by the occupation’s high fatality rate.

The executive order directs various departments of government to provide incentives to construction firms to hire and retain women – and to play Big Brother (Sister?) by tracking, quantifying and reporting whether or not the firms are yielding to the governor’s will.

By incentivizing construction employers to hire more women in this dangerous, and often physically-demanding field, Gov. Mills may well end up serving another of her goals:  advancing her LGBTQ agenda by incentivizing more employment of the LGBTQ community.

Since liberal Democrats argue that a biological male (regardless of his stature) becomes a woman by simply declaring himself to be one, construction firms will be able to cash in on the incentives to hire “women” by hiring tall, strong men (biologically-male) transgender women.