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Women on the railroads: DB launches the first Female ICE with an exclusively female crew

Women on the railroads: DB launches the first Female ICE with an exclusively female crew
photo: Anastasia Schuster / Deutsche Bahn AG/Women on the railroads: DB launches the first Female ICE with an exclusively female crew
13 / 05 / 2022

At the Women's Network at Deutsche Bahn initiative, the company sent its first Female ICE train from Munich to Berlin on May 11, with only women in charge, from the typist to the train manager.

In a special carriage, the organizers offered a unique program for dozens of female colleagues and guests of DB. More women were also on duty along the track - in signal booths, at stations and on construction sites. In Halle and Nuremberg, DB colleagues also held events to inform interested women about job profiles and interesting projects. In total, more than 500 women from DB wanted to use the campaign to send a message and encourage other women to aspire to work in supposedly male-dominated fields and leadership positions as well.

"We need significantly more women in technical professions and management positions. The Female ICE is a great project with which we are once again drawing attention to DB as an attractive employer. I would love to thank the many female colleagues who have put their heart and soul into getting this special train on the rails. We have a wide range of measures in our portfolio to increase the proportion of women at DB. It is a key concern for the DB Group Board of Management. And every female candidate is important to us! The fact that the recruitment figures are rising is already a great success," says Martin Seiler, Member of the Management Board for Human Resources and Legal Affairs at DB.

Franziska Giffey, Governing Mayor of Berlin: "Our working world should encourage all people to take up the profession they want. Role concepts and gender stereotypes are, unfortunately, still often a major hurdle to this. The 'Female ICE' with exclusively female staff is a great, supra-regional campaign by Deutsche Bahn. It shows in an exemplary way that women can pursue any profession and are supported by the company and the state in doing so - whether in the technical area or management. It gives me great pleasure to welcome the train to Berlin, the women's city."

Female ICE / Anastasia Schuster

Ulrike Scharf, Bavarian State Minister for Family Affairs, Labor and Social Affairs, said, "We will not overcome invisible barriers to advancement until women are represented in all industries and positions. Many strong women do great work and are role models for others. They must also be visible! Deutsche Bahn's Female ICE initiative supports women who go their way, regardless of outdated role models. As Minister of State, it is very crucial to me that women seize the opportunities available to them. We need more women in all professional fields and must work on this every day!"

Female ICE was an important event not only in Germany but also in Brussels. Even more recently, DB was awarded the European Women in Rail Award as "the best employer for women in the European rail sector.

Ulrike Haber-Schilling, Director of Human Resources, DB Regio and member of the Women at Deutsche Bahn network: "Women should dare, should make themselves visible - this cannot be emphasized and demanded often enough. With this lighthouse project Female ICE, we want to encourage girls and women to always go their own way. The train is now firmly in female hands - and that also shows how much women move at Deutsche Bahn."

Female ICE / Anastasia Schuster

Bavarian Minister for Family, Labor and Social Affairs Ulrike Scharf and Ulrike Haber-Schilling, DB Regio board member and member of the Women's Network, were present at the train launch in Munich. At Berlin's central station, Female ICE was welcomed by Berlin's mayor Franziska Giffi and Martin Seiler, DB board member for human resources and legal affairs.

DB currently employs about 50,700 women in Germany and has a 25.5 per cent share of women in management positions. The goal is to increase this to 30 per cent by 2024. The "30 Measures for the 30 per cent" recruitment package includes, among other things, nominating more female candidates as part of early succession planning. Every manager is encouraged to do his or her part to improve performance to increase the number of women in leadership.

Adina Vălean, EU Commissioner for Transport: "Less than a quarter of employees in the EU transport sector are women. And less than five per cent are female train drivers. That is not good enough. To get more people, especially women, to choose a career in rail, the sector needs to become more attractive to a wider workforce, including through flexible working arrangements, part-time work, job sharing and childcare facilities. At the same time, gender balance, diversity and inclusion ensure improved service for all rail passengers. Deutsche Bahn has recognized this, and I am confident that other companies will follow suit."