Helmets to Hardhats Empowers Indigenous Veterans, Advances Diversity in Skilled Trades

OTTAWA, June 21, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Helmets to Hardhats (H2H) proudly announces the remarkable progress of its Indigenous Veteran Outreach Project, a pivotal initiative aimed at fostering diversity in the skilled trades while advancing Reconciliation by promoting careers in Canada’s 14 Building Trades Unions to Indigenous communities across Canada.

Since its inception in June 2023, the project has emerged as a pathway for Indigenous Canadian Armed Forces Veterans and their families seeking opportunities in the unionized construction industry. The Indigenous Veteran Outreach Project has achieved significant milestones by engaging with over 70 Indigenous organizations nationwide, which is led by the dedicated efforts of the Helmets to Hardhats Indigenous Outreach Advisor. This engagement has been supported by the project’s active participation in eight major conferences and cultural gatherings, from the Hadiya’dagénhahs First Annual Pow Wow at Brock University to Indigenous Veterans Day celebrations in Manitoba and participating in the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls March with the Cheam First Nation in British Columbia, these events enhanced cultural awareness and facilitated valuable networking opportunities crucial for bridging the gap between military service and civilian careers.

The various outreach methods used in engaging with Indigenous communities are central to the project’s success. Through virtual outreach to remote Indigenous communities and active participation in culturally significant gatherings, this versatile approach has enabled Helmets to Hardhats to exceed engagement goals by facilitating deeper connections within Indigenous communities while promoting the available opportunities in Canada’s Building Trades Unions.

Looking ahead, Helmets to Hardhats reaffirms its commitment to Reconciliation by empowering the Indigenous military community to explore career opportunities within the skilled trades workforce. By building upon its solid foundation of outreach through community organizations and national Indigenous associations, the project aims to sustain and expand its efforts, aligning closely with the evolving needs of Indigenous Veterans and their families. By prioritizing community-specific outreach, the project continues to pave the way for successful transitions of Indigenous peoples into fulfilling careers within Canada’s unionized construction sector.


“I firmly believe that our outreach efforts into marginalized communities are not just about expanding our reach; they’re about unlocking potential and developing inclusivity. By promoting stable career opportunities in the building trades unions, we’re not just building structures; we’re building futures, empowering individuals, and strengthening communities.”

– James Hogarth, Executive Director, Helmets to Hardhats

“I have enjoyed sharing the knowledge of Helmets to Hardhats with Indigenous Veterans and their families who may not have had the opportunity to learn how they can enter into the unionized construction industry. At Helmets to Hardhats, we have worked collectively to bridge the gap so Indigenous Veterans and their families can enter meaningful and successful careers in the skilled trades. I am proud to be part of an organization that is doing its part and working towards purposeful Reconciliation.”

– Laura Leask, Medicine Star Woman, Indigenous Outreach Advisor, Helmets to Hardhats

Contact information:
Aidan Strickland, Director of Communications
Helmets to Hardhats Canada