We're prioritising women’s visibility, activism and leadership in an industry where women are under-represented and men’s needs are still the default.
By providing a safe space for women transport workers to be heard, they can collectively shape trade union, industry and government priorities to include their needs... needs that are so often overlooked in research, policy, planning, industry development and monitoring.
The transport industry is unequal and stubbornly viewed by some as no place for women, where myths and stereotypes about women’s suitability for many transport jobs still persist today. Entrenched industry culture, priorities and practices ensure significant barriers remain to women’s recruitment, retention, promotion, safety, dignity and respect in jobs traditionally viewed as ‘men’s work’ – often the highest paid and most secure jobs in transport.
The issues of most importance to women transport workers are still very under-represented in transport decision making at all levels. The impacts are wide reaching and include fundamental human rights violations. Issues like lack of safe access to clean toilets; gender-based violence and harassment from the public, supervisors and managers, the police and other authorities; uniforms, PPE and equipment designed for men’s bodies; over-representation in informal work with a lack of social protection; concentration in the types of work being decimated by automation and digitalisation; work design that does not recognise the disproportionate caring responsibilities faced by women. Women’s invisibility as transport workers is also evident through a persistent lack of gendered statistics, research, gender impact assessments and gender-responsive economic stimulus.
From campaigning for sanitation rights to implementing a global women’s advocacy programme, the women transport workers committee is committed to a gender-equal new normal across the transport industry. In the face of attacks on women’s rights around the world, disproportionate impacts of COVID-19 and austerity measures on women, and an industry that remains highly gendered, together we are bringing a collective voice of women transport workers to union, national, sectoral and international decision making spaces. We are challenging entrenched discriminatory norms by supporting women to exercise their power and win their rights.
Together we are making a difference, and changing the lives of women workers around the world.
We have 2 strategic focus areas for women transport workers, determined by women union activists and leaders representing every part of the transport industry around the world:
Ending gender-based violence in transport workplaces - We're supporting transport unions to drive change across internal, government, employer and workplace levels through the first ever international law on violence at work, building women’s workplace advocacy, and exposing the impact of domestic violence on workplaces.
Ending the segregation of work based on gender - We're bringing together the experiences of women to make the causes and effects of gender segregation visible, which leave women excluded from some of the best jobs in the industry, and forced into the lowest paid and most insecure work. Women transport workers and potential transport workers deserve a gender-equal new normal. #ThisIsOurWorldToo
We believe that the best way to achieve gender equality in the transport industry is to increase safe spaces for women, building women’s workplace and union activism and leadership around the things that matter most to women transport workers. We work with women leaders at all levels, with male allies, and through feminist union and community alliances nationally and internationally.
DEPUTY WOMEN'S OFFICER