Collated by Sai Ratna Chaitanya Gurugubelli
Transportation plays a key role in women upliftment, by allowing them access to opportunities both outside the transport sector and within. It is pivotal to integrate women’s concerns in urban transport programmes and projects. However, our urban transportation system and facilities are only gradually becoming women-friendly, with much more left to be done. This week’s PT InFocus brings to you news about public transport from the woman’s perspective.
Lactation Rooms soon in Bengaluru bus stands
Breastfeeding mothers who use public transport regularly in Bengaluru can heave a sigh of relief – women’s lounges with lactation rooms are soon to be set up in BMTC bus stops, on a Rs.2.25 Crore budget under the Nirbhaya fund. “We had received several suggestions for a space for breastfeeding at bus stations. Many travelling women wait at bus terminals for long hours, but there are no facilities at most places for them to be able to feed their babies privately. Tamil Nadu has it. It is a good plan and appreciated by many. So, we have decided to set it up in Bengaluru,” a senior BMTC official told The News Minute.
No relief: basic amenities lacking for women bus conductors of TSRTC
Despite Corporation’s efforts to bridge gender gaps in employment, basic amenities such as toilets and drinking water remain lacking. “Padma (name changed), a conductor with the Greater Hyderabad zone of Telangana State Road Transport Corporation (TSRTC) has made a mark in a male-dominated professional space. However, relieving herself while on board is still a challenging part of her job. With no toilet facilities available at any of the city bus stops or change-over-points, not just Padma, but all the 1,670 women bus conductors have no choice but to wait till they reach the respective bus depots before using the toilets”, reports The New Indian Express.
PT in Canada – Women in front-line jobs on the rise
The public transport industry that has been heavily male-dominated until now is witnessing changes in its organisational structure – the biggest transit agencies in Canada have made major strides in recent years bringing on female staff. “Half the senior leadership of the government agency that runs Toronto-area commuter transit is female…From a rarity to a substantial presence, women are now more common on the front lines and especially in executive boardrooms.” However, a lot is left to be done – “if you visit the washrooms in the executive wing of the head office, the guys [still] get twice the facilities and at least three times as much space.” Find out more on The Globe and Mail.