What is the answer?


Having been an airline pilot and now a lady trucker (we number less than 2% of professional LGV drivers) I don’t think that positive discrimination is the answer. Perhaps the way ahead is to offer more flexibility to both sexes. I’m thinking in terms of basing, time off and provision of child care. This might make the profession more attractive in terms of lifestyle which is a massive issue in aviation, as it is in truck driving. The issues also stem back to the education system and the ingrained attitudes and perceptions of us all. I know it is a while back but when I was at school, when asked by my headmistress what I wanted to be she answered thus; “You can’t be a pilot”. “Why not?”, I replied. “Because you should go and do something more feminine like being a nurse”. No disrespect to my nursing friends (and I know a male midwife) but that is not what I wanted to do. Sadly, since then I don’t think attitudes have changed very much. I can say however that I’ve probably experienced less prejudice as a trucker than ever I did when I was a professional pilot!


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