The trucking industry is male-dominated, but this isn’t to say there aren’t female drivers, and unfortunately, they are often the victims of sexual harassment and misconduct. A recent article published by ABC News highlights on such instance of “Jane”, a female trucker who took a job at CRST, Expedited Inc (one of the largest trucking companies in the country) in order to receive benefits, a bigger salary, and paid vacations. Unfortunately, things didn’t work out as she had hoped.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that only 6 percent of the 3.5 million truck drivers in the United States are female. At CRST, truck drivers work in teams of two, which means that two employees share a can with bunk beds in order to be more efficient and safer. In June of 2017, Jane said she was the victim of repeated sexual advances from another driver in Riverside, California. Although this man wasn’t on her team, he did work for CRST and entered her cab without permission, closed the curtain, and start grabbing her. Following the incident, Jane filed a complaint with CRST human resources office. She soon received a letter from an HR representative stating they were conducting an investigation and would take the proper steps on her behalf. However, Jane never learned whether or not this other driver was ever disciplined.
Sexual Harassment Common Among Female Truck Drivers
Soon after she filed a complaint, Jane learned that CRST had faced numerous allegations of sexual harassment over the years. A surprising number of complaints had been filed, and there was a case brought to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) in 2007. This particular case was dismissed, but three women filed a lawsuit in October 2015 against CRST, stating they had been victims of gender discrimination, which included “hostile work environment based on sex; and retaliation for complaining about harassment in the workplace.”
ABC learned that one of the most common complaints for women drivers in CRST’s trainee program was that they were expected to perform sexual favors in order to be hired on as drivers and receive pay. It is important to note that CRST is not the only trucking company to receive complaints about how they treat female drivers. According to David Rusch, CEO of CRST, the company is implementing new policies in order to protect women who have felt threatened and at risk.
This particular case is unfortunately not out of the ordinary. Female truck drivers are in a unique position of working in a male-dominated industry with little to no protection. This is why it is so important they have someone in their corner, such as Attorney Janovsky. If you are a female truck driver who has been the victim of sexual misconduct, harassment, or abuse, please give our Dallas sexual harassment attorney a call. Some of the ways female truck drivers can stay safe in Dallas include:
- Be prepared and have a good emergency kit on hand
- Make healthy choices
- Park in the front lot when possible and make sure the area is well-lit
- Stay alert and aware of your surroundings
- Lock your truck doors when in the vehicle
- Carry yourself with confidence
To learn more about your rights as a female truck driver following a sexual harassment incident, please contact Janovsky & Associates today.