The measures are the result of a process that was initiated after a rapport last year documented serious challenges concerning bullying and harassment onboard Danish-flagged ships.
“As seafarer, one should not fear harassment and bullying – neither based on gender, ethnicity, etc. I would like to thank all the seafarers who have come forward and shared their experiences. No one should have those experiences when going to work. Therefore, it is crucial that industry addresses the problems that have come to light. The new measures are an important step in eradicating this unacceptable behaviour. Now, the measures need to be implemented, and I am pleased to note that all parties in the industry are ready to take action,” said Minister of Industry, Business and Financial Affairs, Morten Bødskov.
The measures include, among other things, that the industry’s stakeholders will target training for ship management and ensure better complaint mechanisms for victims. The courts should have the ability to, by judgment in particularly severe cases, deprive a seafarer of the opportunity to serve on Danish ships. Furthermore, the Sea Health and Welfare Service will have more opportunities to prevent and handle cases of bullying and harassment.
“The study has provided the industry with important and specific information about the working conditions for seafarers on Danish-flagged vessels. Unfortunately, it showed that far too many have been subjected to harassment and bullying while at work onboard. It is therefore gratifying that the industry’s stakeholders have, in close collaboration, come up with a number of specific measures to combat bullying and harassment in the Danish merchant fleet. We look forward to the implementation of the new measures, which we will fully support, and we greatly appreciate the support from the Minister of Industry, Business and Financial Affairs,” said Ole Philipsen, chairman of CO-SEA and Metal Maritime.
“Everyone should be able to safely go to work without fearing bullying or any form of harassment. Therefore, in the shipping companies, we have persistently focused on changing the culture onboard our ships and ensuring that there is room for everyone. It is a challenge that we can only solve by working together in the industry. We are ready for that, and I look forward to launching the new initiatives so that, together with all our other efforts, they can ensure that we eradicate bullying and harassment,” says Anne H. Steffensen, CEO of Danish Shipping.