Written By: Yvonne Schüpbach
Recently got to know this unbelievable story: Saudi Arabia ordered 74 new Metro trains of the company Siemens (Vienna). The total costs will be 500 million Euros. These trains will officially divide the customers in three different social and sexual classes.
Let’s have a closer look to this story. The three different classes of these new metro trains are the following:
- The First Class is very luxurious but for men only.
- The Second Class is similar to what is known as economy class. The Saudi Arabia employer calls it “Family Class”. It’s for men, women and children. But women are only allowed with a male attendant.
- The Third Class is called “Single Class” or “Work Cass”. This Class is designed for single men without a lot of money1
When I read this story I got angry for various things. I wondered why Siemens accepted an order like this? Additionally I wondered what moves a country, like Saudi Arabia, to have such a discriminating metro concept? And I imagined what will happen, if such metro trains become the normality everywhere.
Imagine, our everyday life would be divided in these three classes. Gender. Family but only with a man. And social status. Imagine, there would be three different tables in a restaurant. The best ones, for the First Class. The worst for the poor. Imagine three different schools. One for the rich male kids. One for the middle class families. And one for the poor. Imagine, how would it be? In a world like this? Who would benefit? And who would be the loser?
It’s sad to say, but for a lot of people in our world this is their everyday normality. They are discriminated for sex, gender, race, social status, cast, religion or age. And this list is not completed yet.
This story is not a myth. It’s the reality. This story is a nightmare.
Therefore we have to stand up and raise our voices. We want to fight for a world with more justice, inclusive of all people. A world without classes which discriminate people. We arise our voices for a Zero discrimination lifestyle.
2. Picture with the ordered metro train, Siemens CEO Sandra Gott-Kalbauer and Prject manager Alwalid Alekrish (middle).