Stars and Stripes stripes.com 23 Dec, 2020 12:15 am

Air Force takes steps to clear a path for women's advancement

Air Force takes steps to clear a path for women's advancement
The Air Force is discarding its decades-old height standards, which have disqualified nearly half of female candidates and had a particular impact on women of color.

Her superiors in the Air National Guard had never conducted such a test for the C-17 and had to work with Air Force officials to create one.Now, the Air Force is discarding its decades-old height standards, which have disqualified nearly half of female candidates and had a particular impact on women of color.Even as Pentagon leaders call for an end of racial and gender discrimination in the military following the upheaval that gripped the nation this summer, other barriers for female advancement persist across the Air Force and other services.In the Air Force, a similar pattern is visible in coveted flight positions: Women account for five percent of pilots and just two percent of fighter pilots.

In the Air Force, the focus on equality provided traction for a proposal that the service's Women's Initiative Team (WIT), an internal volunteer group, had been working on for several years.The team hoped to press Air Force leaders to modernize body size regulations that determine who is eligible to fly in different kinds of aircraft and mandate that manufactures design aircraft for a broader array of body sizes and heights.

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