“Make Transport Fit for Women to Work in!” – ETF sounds alarm over industry’s growing gender divide

28 Oct 2020

“Make Transport Fit for Women to Work in!” – ETF sounds alarm over industry’s growing gender divide

Eliminating the entrenched male culture, improving working conditions, equal treatment, and work-life balance, providing access to proper sanitary facilities, and ensuring safe workplaces are the major factors in attracting and retaining women in the transport industry, reveals ETF’s survey of around 3,000 women transport workers across Europe from all transport sectors.

ETF’s survey report marks the beginning of a campaign to ‘Make Transport Fit for Women to Work in’ targeting policymakers and social partners (trade unions and companies) at both national and European level. COVID-19 threatens to deepen the unveiled alarming gender divide that keeps women from staying in and joining the industry if concerned parties fail to take immediate action.

The current EU transport policies fail to address and remedy the fact that only 22%[1] of women make up the transport industry’s workforce. The ETF Women’s Committee took matters into its own hands by conducting a survey to uncover the real reasons for the low female employment rate in transport and to find out what is needed to make the transport sector fair and fit for women to work in.

ETF’s survey revealed that five barriers resulting from gender inequalities and stereotypes persist in the sector, deterring women from joining the industry and impacting their retention:

  • Toxic culture of masculinity and gender stereotypes
  • Discrimination and unequal treatment at work
  • Lack of work-life balance
  • Deficiencies in provision for women’s health and safety at work, including access to decent sanitary facilities
  • High levels of violence and harassment against women at the workplace

Against this background, the ETF demands that all stakeholders take immediate action by:

  • Mainstreaming a gender-responsive approach into EU transport policy
  • Strengthening social dialogue to eliminate discrimination and unequal treatment
  • Improving work-life balance
  • Improving women’s health and safety at work
  • Ending violence and harassment against women at work

ETF’s campaign calls on all actors to step up and act upon these demands to make transport fit for women to work in.

“Breaking barriers and making the sector fit for women workers has become more urgent than ever before: failure to achieve this is unacceptable. Transport cannot remain a male-dominated sector. We must emerge from this crisis and move towards a transport sector that guarantees equal, health and violence-free workplaces for all workers!”, commented Sara Tripodi, Chair of the ETF Women’s Committee.

“To prevent COVID-19 from deepening the gender divide, we need to build a gender-equal new normal. Through involvement of trade unions, gender-responsive policies and measures need to be developed to answer the needs of women transport workers!”, underlined Livia Spera, ETF General Secretary.

[1] Figure from European Commission

 


ETF’s key campaign action dates:

  • November 4 / EU Equal Pay Day ETF call for a pay transparency directive and an end to the gender pay gap
  • November 19 / Word toilet day – ETF call for decent sanitary facilities
  • November 25 / Intl. day for the elimination of violence against women – ETF will launch a workplace policy guidance on how to address the issue of violence against women in the workplace and call on governments to ratify the ILO Convention 190 on violence and harassment
  • November 25 – December 10/16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence – Interview with Dr. Jane Pillinger, author of the workplace policy guidance on how to address the issue of violence against women in the workplace

 

Resources:

 

Follow us: