News Home Video Gallery Newsletters Photo Gallery Cruising Int
Sail-World.com : USA's Women Coast Guard - the effort for recognition since 1915
USA's Women Coast Guard - the effort for recognition since 1915


'Women taking their place in the US Coast Guard'    .

As cruising sailors we depend heavily on the Coast Guard. What happens when you take a Coast Guard asset or office and fill it full of women? Give up? No, this is not a joke. The answer always was … the same job would get done as if it were all male (some would say, better). But this was a difficult learning curve for traditionalists in the USA.

Here Petty Officer third Class Lauren Laughlin, Coast Guard ninth District External Affairs Division, tells the story:


Regardless of gender equality, or physical ability, women in the Coast Guard have shown the willingness to fight for the ability to protect our country and over the years, the Coast Guard realized that the fairer sex works just as hard and can do the same job as men.

Women in the Coast Guard fill many shoes; airmen, seamen, firemen, daughters, mothers, sisters, wives, girlfriends, friends, commanding officers, and everything in between. They work in offices and mechanic shops, aboard cutters, small boats, and aircrafts, and on boat docks. They come in all colors, shapes and sizes. Yet with all these differences they have three things in common; honor, respect and devotion to duty.

Carrying on an old family tradition:
Women have protected American mariners and coasts longer than there has been a Coast Guard. One woman, Hannah Thomas, protected America’s waterways before the United States was a country. Thomas took over her husband’s job as keeper of the Gurnet Point Light, near Plymouth, Mass., when he joined the Army to fight in the Revolutionary War in 1776. Civilian women continued to serve as lighthouse keepers until 1947.

'Both my parents are in public service and raised me to understand what an honor it is to serve my fellow Americans, so I enlisted in the Coast Guard in 2004 to continue the tradition,' said Petty Officer first Class Tricia Eldredge, a current-day member of the Coast Guard ninth District C4IT Branch. Her father also wears a uniform as a chief at the Pinetop-Lakeside, Ariz., Police Department.

'My father has always been my hero and given me a perfect model of how to live my life and what kind of person I should be. I hope to be half the person he is when I grow up.'

Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue:
Early 20th Century American society accepted only three places for women in the work place: the office, the hospital and the school house, but still preferred women at home. As much as women were inspired by family traditions of service they were confronted with traditional beliefs limiting their role in society.

'If I can organize the spice cabinet at home, raise two kids with homework every night and make sure the dog goes to the vet, I don’t see why I would have any problems organizing a yeoman’s office full of like-minded Coast Guardsmen,' said Crystal Kinnaird, administrative assistant to the Coast Guard ninth District commander and a Coast Guard Reserve petty officer one weekend a month and two weeks a year, who was active duty for more than seven years.

Women gradually demonstrated they could do more than type -  .. .  
Taking in the slack:
Genevieve and Lucille Baker, nineteen-year-old twin sisters, were the first Coast Guard women in uniform, they transferred from the Naval Coastal Defense Reserve in 1915, during World War I. Women were allow to serve in the Coast Guard Reserve but only as yeoman, spurring the term 'yeomanettes.' At the war’s end, the 'yeomanettes' were let go by the Coast Guard, and it would not be until 1942 that America realized the need for women in the service once again.

With 16 million American men fighting overseas during World War II, the government realized women would play a major role in the war effort. In 1942, women were once again called into service. Navy Lt. Dorothy Stratton, former dean of women at Purdue University, agreed to transfer to the Coast Guard, as the director of the Coast Guard Women’s Reserve. Instead of re-using the name 'yeomanettes' or government girls, Stratton chose to call the female reservists SPARs, an acronym for the Coast Guard’s motto: Semper Paratus, Always Ready.

'When I first joined the Coast Guard, things were different, we used typewriters for all correspondence,' said retired Coast Guard Capt. Sharon Richey, a graduate of the Coast Guard Officer Candidate School in 1981.

'Overall, I felt the Coast Guard was accepting of women, but we were very much the minority. I was the only female in the class when I attended the Marine Safety Basic Indoctrination Course.'

Looking for a few good women:
SPARs (United States Coast Guard Women's Reserve) had to be between the ages of 20 – 36, have at least two years of high school, and could not be married to or get married to a male member of the Coast Guard. Also, if a SPAR became pregnant, she had to resign immediately.

Women who joined the SPARs faced many challenges at first, not only from the government but from American society too. In 1943, SPARs were confronted with rumors that the female recruiting effort was a front for the government to hire prostitutes for male soldiers and sailors.

The Coast Guard countered this rumor with photos and posters of wholesome, high-spirited, and impeccably groomed young women hard at work, filling in for the men sent overseas. The ideal SPAR was devoted to serving her country and not joining to search for a husband, a trend unchanged to the present day.

'I joined the Coast Guard to make my country safe, save lives and make a difference in the community, not to find a husband,' said Seaman Sierra Heald, a current-day crewman at Coast Guard Station Cleveland Harbor, in Cleveland.

During this time, it was policy that all newly enlisted SPARs were given the rating of seaman second class, since male leadership felt that women lack useful skills beyond typing and working a telephone.

But then one woman demonstrated that she could shoot a gun.

One woman showed that she could use a camera.

One woman showed that she could drive a boat.

One woman proved that she could fix engines.

So, eventually...

...after a very long time...

...women established themselves as equals in the Coast Guard.


by Lauren Laughlin/Sail-World Cruising

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=111153

9:44 PM Sun 23 Jun 2013GMT


Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.

Click for further information on
Safety and the cruising sailor

Related News Stories:

10 Jun 2013  WARNING against electronic flares
02 Jun 2013  Death report points to life raft stowage failure
20 May 2013  Ready, set, wear your life jacket to work!
20 May 2013  Eight Safety Tips for a safe boating season
12 May 2013  More information emerges on America's Cup capsize
07 May 2013  Thailand: Armed robberies on sailing boats leave cruisers shaken
03 May 2013  Lightning kills one crewman on Philippines boat
30 Apr 2013  The Six Minute Safety Sailing Spiel
29 Apr 2013  US Sailors to vote on Loaner Kids Lifejacket locations
27 Apr 2013  Sailor's boat confiscated for carrying cigars
MORE STORIES ...






Cruising USA

Michael Thurston, the owner of the Australian yacht Drina, sent us a message from Nome, Alaska, to inform us that he and his crew had reached the Pacific Ocean thus successfully completing a transit of the Northwest Passage. A late opening of the Bellot Strait allowed Drina to reach the central part of the Northwest Passage only by mid-September. ... [more]  

The World ARC fleet departed the Cocos (Keeling) Islands this morning, embarking on the second longest sail of their circumnavigation; a 2350 nautical miles journey to Mauritius. Their stay in the tropical atoll has certainly been one to remember. ... [more]  

Pantaenius, the world’s leading specialist yacht insurance company, has been at the forefront of yacht insurance for more than 40 years, earning a reputation for transparency and commitment to customer service that provides round-the-clock international support and reliable, speedy claims settlement. ... [more]  

How to make a distance scale for faster navigation by Captain John Jamieson, Florida
If you are anything like me, sailing navigation can be a challenge when short- or single-handed sailing. But you still need to be able to plot fast and accurate positions for sailing safety. Here one little-known sailing tip used by the pros that will help you do just that! ... [more]  

The 14th edition of the Atlas also includes a new double page map of the Arctic Ocean, which highlights the dramatic long-term decline of Arctic sea ice cover. The sub-ice maps draw on bedrock data, provided by the British Antarctic Survey, to show physical features which are obscured by ice cover. ... [more]  

On Monday 22 September the EU Naval Force flagship, ITS Andrea Doria, met the Chinese Navy ship, CNS Changbaishan, in the Gulf of Aden. ... [more]  

The Presque Isle peninsula is a 3,200-acre – 7-mile long arm that extends northeast into Lake Erie creating a large, sheltered boating paradise of a harbour. With a string of well equipped marinas, a wealth of facilities and a very impressive yacht club, it has attractions for boaters that place it at the top of a cruising destination list. ... [more]  

In the early morning of Friday 19 September, EU Naval Force frigate, ESPS Navarra, came to the aid of a stricken yacht in the Gulf of Aden. The yacht had been detected on the warship’s radar in the early morning. ESPS Navarra’s Bridge team initially tried to hail the yacht via their VHF radio. ... [more]  

As their annual migration south approaches, sail and powerboat cruisers are stocking their boat’s lockers, checking systems and taking inventory of spare parts. But that’s not the only preparation these cruising 'snowbirds' will need to do, says Boat Owners Association of The United States (BoatUS). ... [more]  

Lost your rudder at sea? Michael Keyworth perfected a way to steer using drogues. To engineer this solution, he removed the rudder from his own boat(!), and experimented with different method, and has summarized his technique in this terrific article. ... [more]  

You scratched my seagrass! by Steven Katona, Newport, RI
Sailors for the Sea publishes monthly articles that translate the language of marine science into fascinating articles about ocean health. ... [more]  

Following a relatively short stopover in Christmas Island, eleven of the World ARC fleet have now arrived in their next paradise, the Cocos (Keeling) Islands. From first settlement in 1826 by English merchant Alexander Hare, through decades of administration by the Clunies-Ross dynasty, most island inhabitants had little freedom or contact with the outside world. ... [more]  

Paul Whitehouse and Simone Wood, from Wolverhampton and London, were in La Paz in Baja California when Hurricane Odile hit the Baja California peninsula last Sunday. It is thought their yacht overturned, and the couple have not been seen since. The couple is thought to have been living in La Paz for around a year. Mr Whitehouse is believed to be a scuba diving instructor in the city. ... [more]  

This might be the Texting and Facebook generation but boaters need to use VHF radio says volunteer rescuers from Weston-super-Mare's lifeboat station who rescued a yachtsman whose boat sank in the middle of the Bristol Channel and who then texted his girlfriend. ... [more]  

Earlier this year two men died in their bunks of carbon monoxide poisoning caused by the highly toxic fumes given off from a poorly maintained butane gas cooker. The cooker which was located in the wheelhouse had been lit to heat the wheelhouse and sleeping area. A carbon monoxide alarm was not fitted. ... [more]  

The Arctic is an ocean surrounded by land and Arctic sea ice is the thin layer of frozen ocean water that forms and grows during the winter, and melts in the summer. Dr Jeremy Wilkinson from the British Antarctic Survey provides a scientist’s perspective on the trend for decreasing Arctic sea ice. ... [more]  

The Virgin Islands are an archipelago. That part, which is a British overseas territory, is commonly referred to as the BVI. About 30,000 people live in the BVI, most of which live on the island of Tortola. The BVI are comprised of about 50 islands the majority of which are not inhabited by humans. ... [more]  

The Galley Guys take on the Vancouver International Boat Show by Greg Nicoll with Frank Leffelaar and Friends
The Galley Guys hit the Vancouver International Boat Show running. All day long, we were checking out new boats, looking into ice lockers, peeking into storage compartments, seeing what’s new for gourmet cooking onboard and being forced to live on 'show food' by day. ... [more]  

Are you ready to enter that marina? by Captain John Jamieson, Florida
Are you ready to enter that narrow canal or passage ahead that leads into the marina? Have you prepared your boat and crew for the unexpected? No matter if it's a brand new marina or the one you use as 'home base', docking preps will be the same each and every time. ... [more]  

Each summer, in a Canadian cruising tradition, thousands of Western Lake Ontario sailors join the annual summer migration to the Bay of Quinte and the Thousand Islands. ... [more]  

Unlike an automobile, recreational boats have special safety needs when it comes to refueling. Stern drive or inboard powered boats have closed engine compartments where volatile gasoline vapors don’t easily dissipate, and older gasoline powered boats are the riskiest to refuel as their brittle fuel hoses can crack, leaving gas in the bilge after a fill-up. ... [more]  

For the next 72 hours the majority of the World ARC fleet will be moored in Flying Fish Cove on Christmas Island. The crews will have been planning their 48 hours stopover here before leaving Bali so they can make the most of it. Christmas Island is one of the jewels of the Indian Ocean and has a lot to offer. 63% of its land mass is made of National Park which is home to many endemic species. ... [more]  

Three-time President of French Polynesia, Gaston Tong Sang, and current mayor of Bora Bora, has written a strong letter of support for the Blue Planet Odyssey, assuring the fleet a warm Polynesian welcome when they arrive there in 2015. ... [more]  

Remember to properly dispose of obsolete distress beacons by Australian Maritime Safety Authority
You might not be 'down under but here is a cautionary tale!- The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) is urging people to ensure they dispose of their obsolete and unwanted distress beacons correctly after emergency services spent more than six hours homing a beacon eventually found dumped in bushland on Queensland's Sunshine Coast over the weekend of 6-7 September. ... [more]  

Blue Planet Odyssey - We made landfall the morning of Saturday, September 13th at 0900 local time as we passed Race Point at the entrance into Cape Cod Bay. Since leaving St John’s less than one week ago we had covered 1109 miles, at an average of just under seven knots. ... [more]  

The World ARC fleet made a great sight on September 14th as they sailed across the start line at the entrance to Benoa Harbour, Bali. Before leaving Bali International Marina, Arsa, a tour guide who had looked after the fleet during their week-long stay, visited yachts to perform a traditional Hindu blessing. It was a beautiful way to send off the fleet and a very special moment for many. ... [more]  

An international team of scientists, including the British Antarctic Survey, studied the geologic history of the area of the Antarctic Peninsula where the Larsen B ice shelf disintegrated, the portion of Antarctica that extends northwards toward South America. The new findings support the idea that such a dramatic collapse can be caused by surface warming. ... [more]  

The Baltic 4 Nations combines a traditional sailing rally with a flotilla holiday, all in the comfort of your own boat. A 370 mile, two week cruise, visiting some of the most beautiful locations in the southern Baltic. Hanseatic cities, quiet fishing harbours, bustling cities, and great beaches, with opportunities to sample local culture and cuisine as well as some great sailing! ... [more]  

Water expands in volume by about nine percent when it freezes, creating a staggering force that can crack a boat engine block, damage fiberglass, split hoses, or destroy a boat’s refrigeration system overnight. ... [more]  

The latest images from Marina Lanzarote show the new marina is looking smart and ready to welcome the yachts for the second Atlantic Odyssey which leaves in November 2014. Gazel Rebel, Blue Jade and Mahe’3, who will all be taking part, have already arrived, with more on the way. ... [more]  

The director of the Phuket Marine Office (PMO), Phuripat Theerakulpisut, yesterday (September 10) gave more details of two shock announcements that have reverberated through the Thai marine leisure industry and among yacht owners in the past few days. ... [more]  

Following on from the success of their Christmas Caribbean Rally (CCR) and Baltic 4 Nations Rally (B4N), Sailing Rallies announce the addition of two new events to their 2015-2016 events schedule: Antigua 2 Falmouth 2015 and the Spanish Rias Rally 2016. ... [more]  

World ARC crews in Bali by World Cruising Club
Today, September 11, 26 World ARC Crews spent the day on a tour to the Kintimani Volcano. Participants were treated to a wide range of cultural, religious and artistic experiences along the way. Benoa harbour is not the most attractive part of Bali so it was a welcome change of scenery, having escaped the morning rush hour, to firstly visit the culturally interesting town of Celuk. ... [more]  

Could your sailing navigation use a tune-up?
Images of marine sunsets by Tripadvisor
Citizen science model proposed to fill fundamental ocean data gap
Ocean Cruising Club celebrates 60th Anniversary with record gatherings
The Boat Cookbook
Indian Ocean-wide tsunami exercise to test readiness
Blue Planet Odyssey - Aventura makes landfall at St John’s
18 anti-piracy weapons for ships to fight pirates
World ARC fleet now arriving in Bali
EU Naval flagship- frigate assist yacht twice maydays in pirate zone
An offer a Galley Guy cannot refuse
World ARC fleet to enter Indian Ocean for the first time
What can you do to prevent electrocution and ESD?
Pack this sailing gear for 'hands-free' lighting
Salty Dawg Rally Seminar Series planned October 8 in Annapolis
Europe tightens up on skippers competency certification
World ARC fleet departs Darwin under full sail
NOAA expedition discovers ship’s timepiece silent for nearly 200 years
Blue Planet Odyssey - Northwest Passage gate opens
A Cruising Guide to the Dominican Republic 6.0 now available
Africa Europe Challenge introduces 'Spectator's Package'   
Niagara-on-the-Lake, a popular cruising destination in Canada   
The crowd-pleasing comforts of catamaran cruising   
'Sailing Stones' of Death Valley seen in action for the first time   
20 coral species listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act   
A case of crossed wires? A shocking situation!   
OHPRI Teen Summer Camps make a splash   
How amazingly awe-inspiring the Arctic really is   
Boaters urged to attend anchoring meetings next week in Florida   
New atlas provides thorough audit of marine life in the Southern Ocean   
Canal Boating in the Alsace with the Galley Guys   
World ARC fleet arrives in Darwin   
Timeless Tonga - Charter sailing in a Polynesian paradise *Feature   
A fine conclusion to the ARC Baltic 2014   
Where in the world are our strongest corals?   
Incredible efforts to save yacht from being lost at sea   
ARC Baltic fleet visit six countries and six capitals in six weeks   
Helen Island, Palau -a beautiful and unique place   
Barnacle Busting   
From Penguins to Polar Bears   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
XLXL WAS Cru USA
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT