This post is part of the “Women and Wellness” series which celebrates the 100th anniversary of International Women’s Day by exploring issues related to women’s health and wellness in the transport sector and related communities.
Trucking is a part of the lifeblood of Africa. Food, resources and trade, cross borders, travel coast to coast, and north to south on the continent. Yet the trucking industry loses thousands of truckers every year. HIV and AIDS play a role in this loss. Strong women are stepping up to the plate and taking their place in a traditionally male only industry.
Women in the Driver’s Seat features stills and audio by New York photographer, Liz Rubincam. Liz traveled with three female truck drivers during their 12-hour shifts in Durban and Tongaat. She documented their work and home environment over a two-month period which culminated in this multi-media piece. This project was coupled with an exploratory study conducted by HEARD which examined the links between the skilled labour shortage of the road freight industry in South Africa and the hiring of female truck drivers. HEARD research associates, Clara Rubincam and Scott Naysmith led the research which took place from August 2008 to March 2009. For more information on the Female Truck Drivers research project please visit their site.