A letter to our Facebook friends

Dear Facebook friends who post, comment or lurk on the Women In Trucking (WIT) Association Facebook group. Our admins are professional drivers who are just like you. They all have full time jobs driving a truck for a living, however, they have volunteered (no, they do not get paid) to spend their time, energy and passion to keep this page as a resource, a place to network and a safe place to learn….for YOU. Yes, you.

They spend countless hours removing profanity, attacks on other people, recruiting ads and negative comments that are not meant to be helpful.

How about giving them a day off?  What if everyone on our Facebook group actually abided by the rules that YOU agreed to when you were accepted into the group? Let’s allow them ONE day to sit back and have some relief from the negativity and spitefulness.

When you asked to join the WIT Facebook group you agreed to never recruit drivers on this page, but the thought of nearly 11,000 professional drivers in one place is too much for you to follow the rules. Can you imagine how our Facebook group could turn into a recruiting center if we allowed you or any others to post your recruiting ads for drivers? If you want drivers, check out the Career center on the Women In Trucking website and pay for an ad like everyone else. 

We have many new or soon to be professional drivers who turn to our Facebook group for advice or support. Please refrain from making fun of them. You were new to this industry at one point, and I hope that you had someone who you could ask for advice or just a little reassurance. The only stupid question is the one that’s not asked, so if some of the requests for information seem to be uninformed, then let them use this group to learn. Be helpful, not hurtful.

In regard to posting, how about NOT attacking the person because he or she has a different opinion than you regarding their carrier, the job or the shippers, truck manufacturers or anything else? Your opinion is not more valid than theirs, and if you want to point out a FACT they might not have considered, then use data, not emotion, to respond.  

Be civil and do not attack the person’s character but address the statement or opinion. Calling someone names is truly NOT going to benefit anyone and attacking a person for their viewpoint is so unprofessional.

If you do have an opinion about a company that might be a dues-paying member of the Women In Trucking Association, keep this in mind. You might not like a particular carrier, shipper or truck manufacturer, but give reasons WHY you were disappointed. We truly don’t care about your brother in law’s uncle’s grandma’s second cousin’s experience at that company. Second and third hand opinions will not be tolerated. If you want to share a personal experience, we welcome it, but it must be YOUR experience.

Another rule on the WIT Facebook group is that you are not allowed to post photos of truck accidents. Why? Because you’ve seen way too many on the road, and we don’t need to relive these sad, horrific moments again in social media. Please respect this rule and keep it positive. It’s something the admins will delete every time, so abide by the rules and leave out the negative graphics about your fellow drivers who were involved in a crash. 

One of the things I love about this industry is how generous professional drivers can be, but please don’t ask to post a GoFundMe or any other site asking for money. The admins delete hundreds of these annually, and although they appreciate your request, they can’t allow any posts asking for money for a fellow driver or a family member because it would become unmanageable. I send people to the Saint Christopher’s Fund (www.truckersfund.org) all the time.  

Is it really that hard to stay focused on creating a group that supports, nurtures, educates and allows a safe environment for both female and male drivers and those who support them? Is it that hard to read the rules and when you agree to them, then abide by them?

Let’s give our very hardworking admins a break and abide by the rules on the Women In Trucking Association Facebook group. And it wouldn’t hurt to thank them once in a while either.  

Thank you Deb, Cindy, Margaret, Linda, Lori, Mary, Pam, Victor, Marie, Shannon and Tracy Lynn. You’re the best.