Image credits: Shane McLendon
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News Article

Mexico Celebrates International Day of Women in Mining

By Karin Dilge | Fri, 06/17/2022 - 09:27

As an initiative of the International Organization Women in Mining (WIM) the first International Day of the Mining Woman was celebrated on June 15. Mexico joined the celebration, too, highlighting the progress the industry has already made in terms of fostering gender equality.

“WIM is a non-governmental, nonprofit organization born in the UK to empower women working in the mining industry. This initiative came to Mexico in 2017, when we started here, we were a small group of nine women. Now, we have 418 women registered in 11 districts across the country,” said Ana María González, President, WIM Mexico to MBN.

This date arises with an opportunity to recognize the contributions and the progress achieved in the mining industry in its path toward sustainability, diversity and inclusion.

The prevailing stereotypes in the Mexican mining sector have been overthrown to pave the way toward a stronger presence of women in the industry, to the point that approximately 60,000 women today work in the country’s mining sector. This has partly been achieved through the work of WIM, which carries out different actions to boost the participation of women in mining.

“One of the strategies we implemented is to create visibility for the work women do. Above all, WIM highlights the distinct added value that women have brought to this industry, in which the male presence has historically been domineering. The main problem is that the industry is not at all adapted to accommodate women. The skills of these women entering the industry, though they were ignored for a long time, show the wealth of value they offer. It showed the sector the importance of attracting more women to the industry,” mentioned Doris Vega, Vice President Mexico, WIM in an interview with MBN.

The Sustainable Development Agenda of the UN, together with its Sustainable Development Goals, have as a goal to foster social inclusion, environmental sustainability and economic development. In the guide, two key goals are directed toward the incorporation of women in the workplace.

First, gender equality seeks to increase the hiring of women in mining and implement working hours that facilitate childcare, as well as increase the opportunities for women to access executive functions. In addition, the UN focuses on the reduction of inequalities, which concerns anticipating the risks related to inequality and dealing with salary differences between men and women that occupy the same positions. 

The participation of women in the mining sector has increased significantly in recent years. in basic metal industries, 38 percent more women have joined the workforce. For the production of non-metallic minerals, a 45 percent increase has been observed, whereas metallic minerals saw an 11 percent growth. At the extraction of nonmetallic minerals, 6 percent.

In Mexico, the increase of women participating in the sector is partly owed to the fact that the average salary in the industry is 80 percent higher than what women earn elsewhere. Even the salary of a woman working in nonmetallic mining is 23 percent higher than the national average.

The data used in this article was sourced from:  
Outlet minero, MBN
Photo by:   Shane McLendon
Karin Dilge Karin Dilge Journalist and Industry Analyst