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Women’s History Month: Rising to the Challenge to Strengthen our Union for Future Generations

Brothers and Sisters:

Happy Women’s History Month!

NATCA members join our union brothers and sisters in celebrating Women’s History Month (WHM). It is important to our country and our Union to remind ourselves of the accomplishments of women throughout the years and develop greater awareness regarding the challenges that women still face in the workplace.

In the United States, almost 50% of workers are women, but the number of women air traffic controllers still is less than 17%. Nationally, women members hold 15% of elected positions in NATCA. Despite these facts, we are very proud that women hold approximately 35% of our national appointed committee positions. Our Union succeeds because of the invaluable contributions of these elected and appointed female leaders.

NATCA stands in solidarity in calling for an end to sex and gender-based discrimination. Throughout history, union members have stood shoulder-to-shoulder with people in the civil rights movement. Gender inequality is a labor issue because it also is a workplace issue. 

Unions helped overcome some issues of gender inequality by establishing work rules and pay systems that are objective and treat all employees impartially. For example, NATCA’s negotiated pay rules do not allow management discretion to discriminate against women or anyone else. Unions also promote fairness within the workplace and enforce worker rights. But we must not rest on these accomplishments. We must continue working toward greater inclusion in our Union and in the workplaces we represent.

Earlier this month, the NATCA leadership joined other aviation safety professionals worldwide in taking the #ChooseToChallenge awareness campaign against gender inequality. By joining with our international colleagues, NATCA demonstrated our core beliefs that diversity, inclusion, and equity strengthen our profession and our union.
We ask you to honor WHM, celebrate the important gains we have made, recognize the issues we still need to overcome, and commit to calling out sex and gender bias and inequality when you encounter it. We can all choose to challenge and call out gender bias and inequality. Collectively, we can all help create a more inclusive Union and workplace.

In solidarity, 

Paul Rinaldi
President

Trish Gilbert
Executive Vice President