CANBERRA, Australia—Two female air traffic controllers with many years of service working for Airservices Australia, a government-owned provider of traffic control management and related airside services, have filed a Federal Court action. Asserting "extreme" sexual discrimination and bullying, the two women are seeking more than $1 million apiece in a $2 million-plus claim.
“The women claim they were exposed to pornography distributed by a manager and were subjected to regular bullying and abuse,” reported The Age. “They also allege they were denied access to training and professional development, were belittled when they became pregnant and suffered false allegations against them. When they both separately complained in April and May 2008, they were allegedly ignored.”
According to a statement issued by Airservices Australia, "The matter is being taken seriously by Airservices management. Our investigations have only just been completed and the matter is in the hands of respective legal advisors.”
The alleged porn abuse seems to be but one facet of the claimed abuse and insensitivity by airline management. One of the women, Jacki Macdonald, who worked for the airline for 18 years, told reporters that when she told her manager in 1996 that she was pregnant, he responded that the pregnancy was ill-timed and that he had "a coat hanger in the back of his car."