March 8 is International Women’s Day — a day to recognize women’s achievements and acknowledge the challenges we continue to face in the quest for gender equality.
This year, let us be #EachforEqual, because an equal world is an enabled world. We invite you to help promote gender equality through your thoughts, words and actions.
Our history, as a profession, has come a long way in understanding and valuing women. Globally flight attendants – previously called air hostesses – were once seen as sex symbols. Their bodies used as advertising for airlines, selling their image as a promise of a good time on-board. While we have come away from this barbaric practice, we are still not a fully harassment free profession. CUPE is committed to addressing and preventing sexual violence at work and recognizes that everyone has a right to work in a safe environment. Did you know that 43% of women still experience some form of sexual harassment at work? That is unacceptable. Let us challenge ourselves now to question stereotypes, to fight the bias that our profession carries and to really treat each other with respect and dignity.
Collectively we have made many strives to ensure that as flight attendants we have equality in pay, job security and job progression opportunities and it is vital now to ensure equality in other areas for women and those who identify as women.
Beyoncé once said, “We need to stop buying into the myth about gender equality. It isn’t a reality yet.” But I promise you that together we CAN make it a reality.
Remember that the rise of women is not about the fall of men. Let us be a generation that expects gender balance and fights to achieve it. Let us be #EachforEqual.
Happy International Women’s Day from your Air Canada Component of CUPE.
Chair, Component Womens Committee