Nautilus International marked International Women’s Day by urging the maritime industry to do more to support women seafarers and encourage women to enter the profession.
n 2021, Nautilus international conducted its ‘maritime barometer’ survey to gauge the British and Dutch public’s understanding of the maritime industry. The survey found that the average person thought 18% of the maritime industry was made up of women, when the true figure is approximately 2-3%.
However, when asked if they would consider a career at sea, 15% of women answered ‘yes but I don’t know what jobs are available’, a number that was the same for both men and women.
Namely, in the Netherlands, more than a third of women responded saying they would consider a career at sea.
This is clear evidence that women are, at least initially, no less interested than men in pursuing a career in the maritime industry and that lack of interest cannot explain the disparity in numbers
says Nautilus International.
Alongside the survey of the British and Dutch public, Nautilus carried out its 10-year Social Conditions Survey of its members, which clearly showed that women seafarers still face unfair obstacles during their careers.
According to the survey, nearly three quarters of female respondents felt there was not a good variety of sizes in personal protection equipment. Furthermore, when asked about bullying and harassment onboard, a number of respondents highlighted their experiences of sexism and sexual harassment, a major issue facing women at sea.
The International Chamber of Shipping estimates a global shortage of 89,510 seafarers by 2026, but there is a real opportunity to address this by encouraging more women to work at sea. We also need to ensure those who do go to sea feel welcome in the profession. However, this will not happen if women aren’t given adequate safety protection, and if bullying and harassment – including sexual harassment – are not taken seriously
Nautilus International general secretary Mark Dickinson said.