09 September 2013

ASLEF underlined its commitment to equal opportunities at the TUC in Bournemouth by backing a motion to open up every part of the British economy to women as well as men.

The under-representation of women in key parts of our economy, we said, must be addressed by the government. Trade unions are playing their part in raising awareness of the issue but employers have been slow to pick up the baton and the Conservative-led coalition does not appear to be bothered.

In a wide-ranging debate on how unions are helping to change attitudes in male-dominated industries, such as transport, construction, farming, and some health professions, ASLEF supported a Prospect motion calling on the coalition to play its part.

Nigel Roebuck, speaking from the platform, told delegates that while women make up 50% of the population, they only make up 4.2% of train drivers.

‘ASLEF has 833 women members and we want many more. But we can only recruit, as members, women who are taken on and trained by the privatised train operating companies as drivers,’ said Nigel. ‘And the train companies have proved very reluctant to take on women drivers.’

Nigel explained to Congress what our union is doing, and called on the coalition, and the TOCs, to do more.‘Much more.’

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