Decision follows complaints by magazine editor
By ERIC STIRGUS
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Published on: 07/09/08
In the battle of the sexes, women's magazine editor Cynthia Good said this was a skirmish she had to fight.
Across Atlanta they stood, orange signs with black letters that read "Men At Work" or "Men Working Ahead."
Sometimes, the signs stood next to women working alongside the men.
Good demanded Atlanta officials remove the signs and last week, Atlanta Public Works Commissioner Joe Basista agreed.
Score one for gender equality, Good said Wednesday.
"They get it," Good said about the city in a telephone interview.
Public Works officials are replacing 50 "Men Working" with signs that say "Workers Ahead." It will cost $22 to cover over some of the old signs and $144 to buy new signs, said Public Works spokeswoman Valerie Bell-Smith said.
Good, founding editor of Atlanta-based PINK Magazine, a publication that focuses on professional women, said she's not stopping with Atlanta.
"We're calling on the rest of the nation to follow suit and make a statement that we will not accept these subtle forms of discrimination," said Good, 48.
Good pressed the issue after Atlanta police came to her office last month on a complaint that she spray painted "wo" onto a "Men At Work" sign.
Did she do it? Good replied by complaining about the signs.
Good fired off letters complaining about the signs to Atlanta Mayor Shirley Franklin and Gov. Sonny Perdue.
State transportation officials said they will ask contractors to remove signs specifying just men are working at a construction site.
Atlanta union leader Gina Pagnotta said some women employees of Atlanta Public Works complained about these signs years ago.
"It is a little bit bias to say 'Men Working,' " said Pagnotta, president of the Professional Association of City Employees. "Women are working, too."