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Gender Equity In Heavy Equipment Operations

Gender equity in employment has long been a challenge for women. I recently noticed an article on the topic of gender equity in truck driving, and some of the content could be equally applied to heavy equipment and crane operator careers.

Two statements really stood out. The first referred to the fact that a truck doesn’t know whether it’s a man or woman driving it – neither does heavy equipment machinery or cranes. The second statement was even more important, and to the point.

“recruiting ads looking for professional drivers you will often see the starting pay right in the ad. There’s no asterisk that says, “This pay rate is for men only.” Not only is that illegal, it would be foolish for a carrier to differentiate pay when the level of service is not dependent on the gender of the person behind the wheel. ”source

Again, this is very true of both heavy equipment and cranes. In fact, in today’s workforce, there are a lot of women working in all three areas. It’s not unusual to see a woman behind the controls of a bulldozer – in fact, from a distance, I’d challenge most people to tell me if was a male or female behind the controls.

Gender equality does exist in the field of heavy equipment. If you were to ask why there weren’t more female operators, the answer would be easy – they are not coming through and undertaking the heavy equipment training. It is no longer a man’s domain. As a career, the door is open to all who can pass the minimum requirements – and that really relates to training, including safety training, health, minimum age restraints set by the state, and the ability to communicate effectively in English. Meet those criteria, and you can train to operate heavy equipment, drive trucks, and operate a crane.

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