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Nautilus Council member Captain Jessica Tyson reports from the April 2019 Empowering Women in the Maritime Community conference, which she attended as a representative of the Human Rights at Sea charity.
Attending this conference with my Human Rights at Sea (HRAS) trustee hat on, I found it full of unexpected opportunities.
A first time to visit Malmö, and a first time to learn about the conference host World Maritime University and where it sits in relation to the International Maritime Organization.
I also witnessed the launch of the First Geneva Declaration for Human Rights at Sea by HRAS researcher and intern Sayedeh Hadjar Hejizi, from Iran.
Delegates came from all over the world – Cook Islands, Fiji, Canada, USA, Brazil, Indonesia, Singapore, India, West Africa, South Africa, Europe – to a conference that was sold out three weeks before it was held.
The aim was to understand the position of women in the maritime industry currently and to determine the courses of action required to support the UN Sustainable Development Goal 5: Gender Equality.
There were presentations from all aspects of the industry, including fishing, shore and sea-based, management, seafarers, ports and hydrographics. The message that came out loud and clear was that the industry could only benefit from gender balance and equality. No one was looking for special treatment – just opportunities.
I was struck by how the themes that Nautilus International has been grappling with for the past decades are still the ones raising their heads. Balance, education, mentoring, harassment, invisibility of the industry – it was all there.
Balance, education, mentoring, harassment, invisibility of the industry – it was all there. Jessica Tyson, attending the conference as a representative of the Human Rights at Sea charity.