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Transforming maritime step by step

In conjunction with International Women’s Day, the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) launched a new Maritime Diversity and Inclusion Charter

Based on the 2021 Seafarer Workforce Report, female seafarers make up a mere 2% of the entire seafaring community. To transform the maritime industry to be more inclusive, the ICS took the initiative to develop the Charter over the course of 18 months.

With inputs from the ICS Diversity Panel and Women’s Panel, as well as shipping companies, charities, unions around the world and the International Transport Workers Federation (ITF), the Charter would set guidance for companies to work towards creating a wholesome and diverse workplace practice and culture that ensures opportunities for everyone.

Change is coming, slowly but surely
According to an ICS statement, the Charter can be customizable based on the current practices and cultures of organisations, and they can start small and gradually shift the organization into becoming more inclusive and diverse.

This practical method of change shows that the maritime industry still has room to grow and adapt to changing times, in terms of retaining seafaring talent. According to Karin Orsel, CEO of MF Shipping Group and Chair of the ICS Diversity Panel, “I was one of the only women in the maritime sector when I joined at 23. The industry has made many improvements since then, but there is still a long way to go. We developed the Maritime Diversity and Inclusion Charter as a guiding light to inspire shipping companies to do better for all employees.”

ICS Director of Employment Natalie Shaw MBE was also positive that the Charter, which promotes for the transformation of the maritime industry, would help attract talents, “Shipping is one of the most culturally diverse industries on earth. It’s high time that we make concerted efforts to create space to attract people who previously may have not considered the opportunities available in such an exciting sector.”



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