The International Maritime Organization (IMO) is using this year’s ‘International Day of the Seafarer’ to bring attention to the issue of gender equality in the maritime industry.
Each year on June 25, the IMO celebrates the ‘Day of the Seafarer’ to raise awareness on issues impacting the international maritime community through social media. This year’s theme of “Empowering Women in the Maritime Community” seeks to bring attention to gender equality in a traditionally male-dominated industry.
According to IMO numbers, women represent only two percent of the world’s 1.2 million seafarers and 94 percent of female seafarers are working in the cruise industry.
“To everyone in shipping – you are missing out on a huge talent pool if you don’t recognise and empower women in the workplace. Join our Day of the Seafarer campaign and get on board with gender equality at sea,” said IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim.
To help celebrate, the IMO is calling on members of the maritime community and beyond to share their support using the hashtag #IAmOnBoard on platforms like Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
The IMO is also highlighting the stories of three Day of the Seafarer “champions”, including: Pilot Elizabeth Marami, the first female pilot in Kenya; Captain Kate McCue, the first United States female to captain a cruise ship; and Captain Wendy Williams, the first Canadian female to captain a cruise ship.
“Gender equality is vital for sustainable development. Join our Day of the Seafarer campaign to promote seafaring as a career for women,” Secretary-General Lim said. “I’m on board with gender equality at sea. Are you?”