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Working group on sexual harassment at conference

Sexual harassment focus of third NSU women’s conference

Conference works to make maritime industry a safe place for women to work

42 delegates, two government ministers, the head of the national trade union organisation (LO), an author, political advisors, two whistle-blowers and a national newspaper met outside Oslo in January for our third women's conference.

Creating a safe working environment for women was a key theme of the conference.

Representatives from the shipping industry spoke about their experience as women working in male dominated companies and how to make it easier for women in the maritime industry.

Both national trade union (LO) leader, Peggy Hessen, and the Norwegian Equalities Minister talked about their experiences of building a career and the importance of a workplace free from harassment and bullying.

Delegates worked in groups to answer questions, such as ‘how to encourage more women to work in maritime’ and ‘how can we deal with sexual harassment in the shipping industry?’

Importantly, we heard from two young women who shared their experiences of being sexually harassed in the fishing industry. Their decision to ‘blow the whistle’ and tell authorities about what happened to them led to an industry-wide investigation and media coverage. The women were praised for their bravery.

Survey of members

Following this, President, Kurt Inge Angell, told conference about the survey the union has commissioned to explore the levels of sexual harassment and bullying in the maritime industry in Norway. It is the largest and most detailed survey commissioned by a Norwegian union. Results are expected in May 2023. The survey is being carried out by Opinion Norge on behalf of the union.

Finally, presentations from experts on the state of the maritime industry in Norway. It was clear from this report that we still have a long way to go before women have equal representation but we are working on it.

For photos of the event, visit our Instagram account: https://www.instagram.com/sjomannsforbund/

To find out more or to send ideas for next year’s conference, please email us at mail@nsu.org

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