Opinion

Creating an understanding of career options

As International Women’s Day (IWD) is upon us and this year’s theme is #breakthebias, we will be inundated with articles about parity, equality, and quotas and all these other buzzwords. 

What we should be concentrating on is not the bias but creating an understanding about the reality of careers within the trucking and logistics industry.  

Without breaking down those image barriers, we will never have the workforce that we really need. We need to show how diverse and inclusive the industry is, so we can fill those roles for truck drivers, operations personnel, diesel technicians and so forth. 

Until we can breakdown the image of the industry being all about truck drivers or males, we will not attract the next generation of transport and logistics workers. We need to do this by showing that we welcome males, females, transgender people, and everyone who is willing to work. If we do not do this, we are going to be in trouble fulfilling the requirements of the ever-increasing freight task.

At the Transport Women Australia Limited IWD events, we will be highlighting many different women. We have the incredible Frances Ross of Ross Transport telling of her transport journey at the Wollongong dinner (March 9); we have a panel of three women at the Melbourne dinner (March 8)– Ruza Zivkusic-Aftasi, a transport journalist, now TV host, Benish Chaudhry, a university professor and Louise Iozzi who has been involved with AFLW and the world of car racing. 

At the Dubbo breakfast (March 11), I will be joined by the amazing Sally Tipping who will speak about her Wave to a Truckie campaign and then the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator chief prosecutor Belinda Hughes will present a seminar on enforceable undertakings.  

At the Albury/Wodonga breakfast (March 15) we will have a breakfast speaker followed by the same speaker and seminar as Dubbo on enforceable undertakings presented by the NHVR. 

For Sydney (March 10), we have something different; Schon Condon of Condon Agency, this fascinating gentleman will speak about supporting women in business and in the community. I will look forward to hearing Schon’s views and his overview on this year’s International Women’s Day theme.

In the past weeks we have had our TWAL planning weekend and we have many events and some new projects now in the initial stages. We hope to launch later this year.  Of course, focus has been on the IWD events and now will turn to our Driving the Difference conference to be held June 3-5 in Melbourne. 

I am looking forward to this after two postponements. We are grateful to sponsors who stayed committed and our speakers who are eager to participate. We have an amazing programme and exciting weekend planned for attendees. 

The Queensland board member, Elizabeth McGrath ,has resigned after two years, and we wish her every success in the future. She has been a very caring member on the board for those two years, and we know that she will continue to support TWAL at every opportunity. 

In the coming weeks will be expanding some of the current programmes and launching some subcommittees. These subcommittees will be chaired by board directors, but we will be calling upon members for participation. We will have a new board member begin as coordinator for the Creating Connections Mentoring programme and she will reach out to all mentors and mentees, and I am sure that this will prove a great boost to this excellent programme. 

We hope to see you at one of our many events real soon and if you have any queries about the International Women’s Day events, Driving the Difference conference in June, please reach out to chair@transportwomen.com.au, or call 0417 422 319.

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