In the most one-sided poll we’ve run, respondents to our survey questions about the FAA’s initiative to make its language more inclusive were overwhelmingly against the action and planned to largely ignore the FAA’s changes, if they happen. That said, the last question we posed, which was about the importance of attracting a more diverse group of folks to aviation, indicated that respondents’ views on the language move might be more about the way the FAA is going about making aviation more inclusive than that end goal.
But those who participated in the survey were strongly against the language proposal. When asked how important they felt the inclusive-language initiative was, 83% felt as though it was “a stupid idea to begin with” or that it was a waste of time and money. Just 17% thought it was a good idea, with just 10% saying it was “long overdue.”
We also asked how pilots planned to incorporate the new language (since it’s almost certain the FAA will adopt the plan) when it becomes official, and 62% said that they planned to ignore it, while another 18% responded that they would “reluctantly adopt some of it.” Just 20% said they were “down with the changes.”
Then we posed the larger, elephant-in-the-room question: “How important do you think it is to make aviation welcoming to a more diverse group of people,” since the FAA says that this is its end goal. Thirty-eight percent said that it’s “not a priority. It’s fine the way it is,” and another 18% chose, “It’ll happen when it happens.”
For more on Inclusive Language in the world of aviation, click here: FAA Holding Inclusive Language Summit