“Kimoy is passionate and always yearning to help others. The fire that fuels her is not materialistic things or money but seeing the people she has helped become successful. Her eagerness to help is unmatched. She creates strategies that fits your needs, talents, skills, and desires and pushes you towards a better you. With Kimoy as a mentor not only will you grow to be the best version of yourself, but you will have gained a life-long friend and supporter in the process.” Juwan Abolaji, Kimoy’s Mentee, NexGen Builders in Construction and 1st Year Apprentice, IBEW.
Kimoy Francique is a licensed Electrician and proud member of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 353. Early in her 18 years with IBEW she earned her Red Seal designation allowing her to travel anywhere in Canada with her skill. She also holds her ticket for Fire Alarm Install electrician.
Kimoy has shown her dedication to the Black community as a long-time member of IBEW’s Human Rights Committee and more recently vice president of the Electrical Workers Minority Caucus-Ontario, applying for charter status in August 2021. Kimoy is also a proud member of the Coalition of Black Trade Unionists. Kimoy was also recently appointed as an Apprentice Advisor at the Electrical Apprentices Training Alliance. She is one of the founders, and holds the position of Treasurer, Board of Directors for the Afro Canadian Contractors Association.
Kimoy is a mentor with Toronto Community Benefits Network’s ground-breaking mentoring program NextGen Builders, and a member of TCBN’s Speakers Bureau. As a guest speaker with TCBN’s Community Host Program, she has travelled across the City (and more recently via ZOOM,) to introduce the construction trades as a viable career choice for youth, women, and newcomers. Hundreds have heard her message.
Kimoy’ s message is informed, honest and encouraging without minimizing the challenges Black women and men may encounter in the industry. In her own words, she puts it all on the table:
- I …(recently)…received my 15-year membership pin, which I am very proud of. During that time, I have worked on many different types of projects, some big some small. I’ve always enjoyed my work. I was exposed to different sites and varied types of work in the electrical field. I take pride in a job well done.
- It is sometimes difficult being a woman in the trades. You may experience racism, I speak from personal experiences, as I am a woman of African descent. You may experience sexism. It is a male dominated field and old concepts are hard to dispel.
- Lucky for us women we are incredibly determined beings. Women are hardworking, knowledgeable, reliable, experts in their given trades. Their work speaks for them.
- This combined with improvements and enforcements of new laws (anti-bullying law), the creation of the position of Human Rights Representative within the IBEW; I have seen a slow but consistent forward thinking change in the attitude in the construction industry.
- Although it may be more pervasive in my industry, all working women are aware of the inequalities in the workplace.
- What you are guaranteed as a union electrician is equal pay, benefits, and representation. I make the same amount as my brothers because we hold the same ticket, 309-A. An electrician’s union hourly rate is $47.65/hr. Before my benefits package my rate is approximately $69.72/hr. That package among other benefits includes my pension and R.R.S.P.
- As a licensed tradesperson I can, if I so choose, start my own business. And some of us do, using our skill as a secondary source of income.
- Others decide to pursue related fields like fire alarm, communications, solar, etc. And our members can do this with relatively ease because the union offers a variety of courses to its members at no cost. Another part of our benefit package!