Women in trucking bill introduced in Senate

November 15, 2019

Mark Schremmer

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A pair of U.S. senators introduced a bill aimed at supporting women in the trucking industry.

Sens. Jerry Moran, R-Kan., and Tammy Baldwin, D-Wis., on Nov. 14 introduced the Promoting Women in Trucking Workforce Act, which would require FMCSA to establish a Women of Trucking Advisory Board.

“Because women are substantially underrepresented in the trucking industry, Congress should explore every opportunity to encourage and support the pursuit of careers in trucking by women,” Sen. Moran said in a news release. “I’m proud to introduce this bipartisan and sensible bill with Sen. Baldwin that will lead to new job opportunities for women and increase equality for women already in the trucking industry.”

According to the news release, women make up 47% of the U.S. labor force, but only 7% of the nation’s truck drivers.

“Removing the barriers that get in the way of women pursuing and retaining careers in trucking is key,” Sen. Baldwin said.

The Women in Trucking Workforce Act

As part of the legislation, the advisory board would be instructed to identify:

  • Industry trends that directly or indirectly discourage women from pursuing careers in trucking.
  • Ways trucking companies, nonprofit organizations, and trucking associations may coordinate to facilitate or support women pursuing careers in trucking.
  • Ways to expand existing opportunities for women in the trucking industry.
  • Opportunities to enhance trucking training, mentorship, education, and outreach programs that are exclusive to women.

It also would require the FMCSA administrator to submit a report on the advisory board’s findings and recommendations to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation and the House of Representative’s Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure.

The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association supports the Women in Trucking Workforce Act.

“OOIDA is supportive of the approach, and we’re actively working with the sponsors to expand the proposal to include greater focus on the retention of women drivers,” said Collin Long, OOIDA’s director of government affairs. “Getting more women behind the wheel is critically important, and we have to ensure once they’ve entered the industry they can thrive and advance.”

Mark Schremmer

Mark Schremmer, associate editor, joined Land Line in 2015. An award-winning journalist and former assistant news editor at The Topeka Capital-Journal, he brings fresh ideas, solid reporting skills, and nearly two decades of journalism experience to our staff.