Who run the world? Girls.
By Jane Kaminski
For the first time in Bike Pittsburgh’s history, women outnumber men on our staff! While national and local surveys show that the ratio of women to men commuting by bikes is 2:1* men to women, the Bike Pittsburgh staff is now made up of 4 men and 5 women, and I think it’s awesome. Interns included we’re 50/50 with 6 men and 6 women!
If someone glanced at these surveys or made observations about who is riding bikes on the streets, the stereotype comes out that “women don’t ride bikes” as though it’s just the nature of things. But, what our staffing suggests, and what the voices of people involved in our community suggest, is: women TOTALLY care about bicycling and walking. Those numbers just prove that there are issues related to women and accessibility to bicycling, so we’re here to change that.
One of the first steps to getting more women riding bicycles is to make sure that women are equally represented in the professions and communities that make up bicycling. That is why we are so proud to see BikePGH’s staff having the number of women it does.
The team of women at BikePGH is made up of Bridgette, Jane, Julie, Ngani, and Sarah. You can learn more about us and our roles on the staff page. One thing we all have in common is that we love biking and we have committed to working 40+ hours a week to make our city more accessible to people.
There is no denying that in the United States, bicycling is a man’s world. From employment, to merchandise, sporting events, and attitudes, historically women haven’t had much of a presence in the industry. As bike advocacy organizations have grown across the country, however, more and more women are showing interest in bicycling and advocating for better biking and bike culture. Let’s also not forget Susan B. Anthony:
“Let me tell you what I think of bicycling. I think it has done more to emancipate women than anything else in the world. It gives women a feeling of freedom and self-reliance. I stand and rejoice every time I see a woman ride by on a wheel…the picture of free, untrammeled womanhood.” -Susan B. Anthony, 1896
The Road Ahead
We’ll be hosting more women’s events! The Women & Biking program–recently dubbed The Spinnsters–will be adding on to the existing coffees and the annual forum, and hosting happy hours, work shops, and hopefully some rides too! Check out the upcoming events:
– Winter Bike Maintenance Workshop (SOLD OUT!) 1/21
– Spinnsters Coffee Meetup 1/27, 8am, Black Forge Coffee House
– Spinnsters Happy Hour 2/24, TBD
– 3rd Annual Women & Biking Forum 4/2
Want to stay in touch about Spinnsters events? Sign up for the BikePGH Messenger and select the ‘Women & Biking’ checkbox. If you’re thinking about volunteering or leading a ride for the Spinnsters, reach out to me at email@example.com.
*see the American Communities Survey for data https://www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/data.html/
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