Today, European shipowners are marking World Maritime Day. The theme this year is “Empowering Women in the Maritime Community”. ECSA and its members are committed to make the shipping industry a more attractive and safer workplace for women and to promote equal opportunities for women and men in the transport sector, following the joint declaration of intention co-signed with its social partner, the European Transport Workers’ Federation (ETF). In line with the recommendations from the International Labour Organisation’s ( ILO) tripartite meeting earlier this year, our members are working to increase women applicants through recruitment drives, and to provide female seafarers with a shipboard environment where they are respected and their contributions duly valued.
We are convinced that any growth strategy for a strong, attractive, competitive, prosperous and socially sustainable European maritime industry requires shipping to renew its commitment to the SDG goals and to work for a more gender diversity and equality of opportunity. “Diversity is necessary for the industry to grow, adapt and renew itself. The changes and challenges faced by the shipping industry require a renewed strategic approach and a broader pool of skills that can move the industry forward,” said Tim Springett, ECSA’s spokesperson to the Sectoral Social Dialogue Committee. “Shipping companies are looking into alternative ways of working, influenced by digitalisation and automation. These present an opportunity to attract more women into our industry.”
An example of a national recruitment drive is the Girl Power campaign recently launched in Denmark to promote the career possibilities for women in shipping. Another example is the Fair Winds project, an initiative by Swedish partners submitted to the European Platform for Change. The project aims to create a world-class work environment with a zero vision of harassment and discrimination. “In the weeks to come, we will be launching our EU-wide campaign for more growth and quality jobs in shipping, in order to reach the objective of enhancing the sustainability and competitiveness of the shipping industry and the European seafarers,” said ECSA Secretary-General Martin Dorsman. The ECSA Secretariat will be conducting a publicity event outside the European Parliament in Brussels. Follow the hashtag #WorldMaritimeDay on social media to check out what we and our members are doing to celebrate the occasion.