March 8th is International Women’s Day, and Class A Drivers is celebrating by honoring the Women in Trucking organization. As many in the trucking industry are aware, a shortage of truck drivers threatens the ability to keep basic consumer prices low for people all across America. Women in Trucking has been dedicated to filling that shortage by helping women become truck drivers.
Women are currently about 7.89 percent of the total driver population, and there are many issues that prevent or impede their ability to join the ranks of other truck drivers. One of the most prominent issues is the stigma of being a truck driver.
Class A Drivers understands that truck drivers are a brilliant combination of adventure seekers and hard workers. Unfortunately the career still carries the stigma of being filled with rude or messy male truck drivers. While truckers of both genders are rarely like this, the public image has disincentivized women from getting their CDL and hitting the road.
Like Women in Trucking, Class A Drivers is doing our part to erase that stigma and reveal truck drivers as consummate professionals. We encourage any women considering truck driving to read our Become a Truck Driver guide to learn more about this career.
Other issues that are specific to women include the following:
- On-the-Job Training – After receiving a Commercial Driver’s License, most trucking companies require new drivers to team up and drive with a trainer. This means staying on the road for a month or more in one truck. Understandably, many women don’t wish to drive with a dude they just met in a truck with only a bunk bed in a single sleeper berth. Women can find companies with women trainers, but this option should be more available.
- Safe, Well-Lit Parking – This isn’t only an issue for women, but it disproportionately affects them. Occasionally, it can be difficult to find parking on the road when your driving hours are up. Women, particularly, may be the targets of assault or robbery when going between the truck stop and their truck in the dead of night. It’s crucial to support the building of more safe parking if we want to encourage more women to enter the trade.
- Sexism– While most trucking companies are not staffed by blatant misogynists, there are still barriers for many women regarding their gender. A few bad apples can ruin a woman’s opportunity to get a high-paying career if they are dismissed just based on being a woman. This is why it’s so important to have organizations like Women In Trucking to advocate on their behalf.