The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) launched a Maritime Diversity and Inclusion Charter on International Women's Day (IWD) to drive forward diversity and inclusion in the industry.
The online tool can be used for shipping companies to improve work practices and policies and to determine the maturity of an organisation's existing diversity and inclusion practices.
Signatories will agree to actions and pledges to build their own personalised charter and be assigned an achievement level for their diversity commitments.
The launch is in conjunction with ICS's IWD campaign #ThisIsWhataSeafarerLooksLike which showcases the broad roles women fulfil in the maritime sector, from cadet to CEO.
The charter was developed over 18 months, in partnership with the ICS Diversity Panel and Women's Panel, made up of representatives from shipping companies, charities, and unions around the world, and has received input and support from the International Transport Workers' Federation (ITF).
One theme of IWD 2022 is #BreakTheBias – a challenge to stereotypes across society – and the ICS produced a short film to highlight what it says is progress on diversity within maritime
Natalie Shaw MBE, ICS's director of employment commented: 'It has never been more important to provide a safe company culture in which equality, fairness, and respect are incorporated into policies and behaviours.
'This Charter aims to recognise the efforts of many, while providing guidance for those who still have work to do. 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.'
ICS plans to release its Diversity and Inclusion Toolkit for Shipping later this year to guide industry's journey, improving policies and practices to meet the needs of the diverse seafarer community.