5,000 signatures reached
To: Airline CEOs
Improve maternity pay for women pilots
We are calling on you to bring the airline industry into line with other sectors and improve maternity pay for your current and future pilots.
Why is this important?
Only 6% of Britain's airline pilots are women. And almost every UK airline offers the absolute statutory minimum maternity pay provision. This is despite the fact that pilots have to repay their training loans – amounting to over £100,000 in many cases – even when on maternity leave.
That means that women pilots on maternity leave lose up to 90% of their earnings and end up spending more money on their training loan repayments than they bring in in maternity pay – let alone anything left over for living costs.
We need to make the piloting job more family friendly and attractive to women if we want to increase the number of women applying to become pilots.
Many of the hardships associated with an 80-90% reduction in pay are obvious, particularly those which coincide with the extra expenditure involved in preparing for a new baby. Many women pilots are the highest earners within their families – the traditional ‘breadwinner’ role. Some are single parent families. Increasingly, women pilots are also servicing debt from the costs of higher education and flight training, along with saving for the costs of buying a first house.
Women pilots have told us :
“The current maternity package does not encourage women into aviation and in my case is stopping me from having the freedom to start a family when I am ready.”
“The statutory maternity provision is less than half my loan repayment.”
“Ultimately we found ourselves debating whether it would be better to keep the baby and move out of the home we have just settled in to, or have an abortion and spend a few years figuring out a financial plan”