Image from James Morgan Photography: Clea Smith, CEO of Tradeswomen Australia Group and KL, an electrician stand in front of the new TWA tram wrap featuring KL at work.

31 JANUARY 2024

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia


Women working successfully in trades that are traditionally male dominated will be celebrated on Melbourne’s tram network with the Tradeswomen Australia Group’s ‘Women Succeed in Trades’ tram rolling onto tracks from 30 January 2024.

Delivered with the support of the Yarra Trams Community Partnerships Program, which provides in-kind advertising to charities and not-for-profit organisations to promote the work they do in the community, the bright tram uses images of real tradeswomen working.

Tradeswomen Australia’s new CEO Clea Smith explains one of the key barriers for girls and women taking up a trades career is the lack of role models in plain sight.

“Research has shown you ‘can’t be what you can’t see’ so we want this tram to help boost awareness of how women can work successfully in trades, Clea Smith said.

pink, gree orange and yellow tram
The TWA tram at the Kew Depot

Tradeswomen Australia Group (TWAG) is a non-profit organisation working to support more girls, women and non-binary into trades. TWAG’s goal is that all women should feel safe, secure and comfortable at every workplace, and be able to participate in the career of their choice. By running the Remade for Trades workshops through the Tradeswomen Australia Community Foundation, the TWAG can reach women experiencing disadvantage and help boost their confidence about starting a career in trades.

TWAG also want industries experiencing skilled trade shortages to fill their empty roles with this previously untapped workforce. Currently, only 2 per cent of the Australian construction trades workforce are women and this figure has remained unchanged for over 25 years.

In the past women have been excluded from lucrative trades jobs through historic gender discrimination barriers, a lack of promotion of trades at the school level, and in some cases, a lack of support or awareness by parents that a trade career is a great option for women.

“The ‘Women Succeed in Trades’ campaign will show images of real women succeeding in trades and is designed to help break down the unhelpful and false stereotype of only men being able to work in trades,” Clea Smith said. “We want to encourage girls and women to go to our website to find out more about the great careers that are available across a wide range of industries.”.

Appearing on the tram are images of KL, an electrician, Jennah, a refrigeration technician and Safa who has her own gardening business, with the design completed by a talented team of undergraduates from the Swinburne Design Bureau.

The ‘Women Succeed in Trades’ tram campaign will run from 30 January to May 9 and is made possible through the Yarra Trams Community Partnership Program which is committed to creating a more sustainable and equitable Melbourne.

As well as support for tradeswomen, TWAG aim to create equity and equality in trades by partnering with employers to create culturally safe and inclusive workplaces.

Chair of TWAG Kit McMahon said the organisation was so delighted to be partnering with Yarra Trams and this campaign unequivocally affirms the adage, ‘you can’t be what you can’t see,’ showcasing the importance of an equitable and diverse workforce.

“Through impactful visuals and compelling narratives, this campaign can highlight the essence of a workforce that embraces diversity especially, women. This campaign not only highlights the myriad benefits for employers, businesses, and the community but also sends a resounding message on the invaluable contributions of a diverse workforce.”

CEO of Yarra Trams Carla Purcell welcomed the TWAG tram onto the network.

 Building a more gender-balanced workforce at Yarra Trams is a major focus for Keolis Downer (the operator of Yarra Trams) and partnering with organisations such as Tradeswomen Australia will promote greater diversity in the wider rail industry to be more reflective of the communities we serve.

I can’t wait to see their tram out on the network and the results of their exciting campaign.”


Media enquiries

Alison Manton


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