25 June 2019
RMT Press Office:
RMT demands pay justice in the fight for more jobs and training for women seafarers
MARITIME union RMT today stated its support and commitment for increasing the number of women seafarers working in the shipping industry, as part of the events and celebrations being held on this Day of the Seafarer 2019.
RMT General Secretary Mick Cash said: “RMT is working hard to increase the number of UK seafarers, women and men working in the shipping industry.
"Over a quarter of UK Ratings are women but there is no data to show the gender split amongst the 67,000+ non-UK Ratings currently working in the UK shipping industry. If we are to seriously tackle gender imbalances in the shipping industry, employers must break with the prejudiced practices of the past that breach women’s basic human rights and give equal status to all women in the industry, whether they are On Board Service Ratings or working in the City of London for a maritime law firm.
"There is a clear link between the scourge of low pay in our industry, which sees the majority of Ratings paid below what would be legally acceptable on land and the under-representation of women in seafaring grades.
"Chronic inequality and pay discrimination is no basis for attracting more women to train and work as Seafarers and there is certainly no justification. On Day of the Seafarer, RMT calls on the Government as well as the shipping industry’s numerous lobby groups to acknowledge the link between gender and pay equality and to increase the number of women seafarers in training and employment.”
Notes to Editors
The International Maritime Organisation have designated 25 June as the Day of the Seafarer 2019, with the theme of gender equality. http://www.imo.org/en/About/Events/dayoftheseafarer/Pages/day-of-the-seafarer-2019.aspx Department for Transport Seafarer Statistics (Table SFR0302) show that 27% of UK Ratings working for UK Chamber of Shipping member companies are women. 4% of certificated and 34% of uncertificated officers are women.
https://www.gov.uk/government/statistical-data-sets/seafarer-statistics-sfr Department for Transport Seafarer Statistics (Table SFR0303) show that UK seafarers, women and men, hold under 15% of the total number of Ratings jobs with UK Chamber of Shipping member companies. The Department for Transport’s Seafarer Statistics do not contain any data on the gender split between the 67,460 non-UK Ratings working for Chamber of Shipping member companies. Non-UK Ratings employed in the UK shipping industry are invariably paid below the UK National Minimum Wage. The UK Government has agreed to legislation in the autumn which will extend the NMW to cover UK-UK and UK-UK Continental Shelf routes. Seafarers on international routes from UK will remain at risk of pay discrimination and exploitation. RMT’s SOS 2020 campaign aims to end all forms of pay discrimination against seafarers.