Women in the Air Force

The Air Force reflects a modern Australian society and is committed to developing diverse and inclusive teams that contribute to Air Force capability. We value the contributions of our people and recognise that our members' combined knowledge, skills and experience are an essential element of our success.

All job roles in the Air Force are open to women, with equal pay to men. The range of jobs are as diverse as the people we employ, including:

  • Pilot
  • Engineer
  • Logistics
  • Administration
  • Security
  • Education
  • Air Traffic Control
  • Doctor and other allied health roles

Visit Defence Jobs for more information about careers in the Air Force.

Initiatives to encourage women in Air Force jobs

As at 1 April 2021, women represent 25.3% of Air Force personnel and we want to increase this number.

We recognise that women are a largely untapped source of talent, especially in fields considered ‘non-traditional' for women such as technical trades and aircrew roles.

Significant resources have been allocated to attract and retain Air Force women, including the establishment of a dedicated team in 2009. Implemented strategies include:

  • greater access to flexible work;
  • better management of breaks in careers; and
  • improved availability of mentoring and support networks.

Project WINTER (Women In Non-Traditional Roles) is specifically aimed at increasing the participation and support of women in Air Force jobs where they represent less than 7% of that workforce.  

Tertiary Aviation Reimbursement Scheme has been introduced to attract people from a Specified Demographic Group, including women, to an Officer Aviation role in the Air Force. The scheme is currently available to women studying an aviation specific Bachelor level degree. For full eligibility criteria and fund reimbursement details, please contact Defence Force Recruiting.
Air Force Sponsored Flying Scholarships are awarded to two young women under the age of 24 each year. The two Air Force sponsored scholarships are designed to assist young women with the costs of pursuing a career in aviation. To find out how to apply, visit the Australian Women Pilots' Association.
Accreditation as a Breastfeeding Friendly Workplace by the Australian Breastfeeding Association makes the Air Force the first military organisation in the world to achieve such accreditation, and demonstrates our commitment to and support for women returning to work following maternity leave.

Female aircrew

Women are eligible to fly as aircrew and/or be in control of all Air Force aircraft platforms.

Women in Aviation/Aerospace Australia

Air Force has an ongoing partnership with Aviation/Aerospace Australia, a not-for-profit independent association which helps women in our workforce develop broader aviation networks.

For more information, visit Aviation/Aerospace Australia.