What’s up with sexism at the TTC, anyway?

Alright, fine. You want to play that way, TTC? Let’s play.

I was on the subway this morning when the driver announced a delay on another line that would affect us if we’re heading into the downtown core. She mentioned which station the delay is from and what patrons should do to avoid the ensuing clusterfuck.

I’ve heard her do this before, and I’ve never heard a similar announcement by anyone else.
As I’m sitting there in smug self-satisfaction since the delay won’t affect me, another person goes on the PA. “Ahhh…. To give you guys an abbreviated version of that previous announcement…” He starts and then continues to say virtually the same thing she said in no fewer words.

Who the fuck do you think you are, asswipe? Would you do that if it was a male conductor? I think not. For one, this dipshit added literally nothing to the announcement in either brevity or additional info. Secondly, the tone with which he said it meant very clearly to mean that she hadn’t done an adequate job.

She must have been too busy curling her hair in the driver’s cabin.

That made me think. I see very few women working at the TTC outside the janitorial staff – also the worst paid group in the system. In fact, virtually all the janitors I see day to day are women. Meanwhile, almost all the people I see actually driving the buses, operating the trains and streetcars, sitting in the booths are men. I think in over 10 years of taking the TTC all over the city I’ve seen one female area supervisor.

Where are the ladies? I’m not sure why, but I figured Karen Stintz would have sorted through possible gender discrimination. Maybe this issue is entirely my perception, and that was just a singular and extremely unfortunate incidence of sexism that is colouring my memory. That said, they don’t seem to publish any statistics on the diversity of their workforce, which is extremely disappointing.

As a tax-funded institution, I think they owe us a bit more accountability. Whether there is an issue or not, if even tech companies are at least owning up to doing badly in this area, I think the TTC must make their efforts and the results known.


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