This was stated by Director General of the Maritime Authority of Jamaica, Rear Admiral Peter Brady, in his message marking International Day of the Seafarer, which is observed on June 25 each year. According to Admiral Brady, Jamaica is committed to empowering women in the Maritime community through the endorsement of the various initiatives of the IMO that pertain to the upliftment of women in the industry. “We actively support the Women in Maritime Association Caribbean (WiMAC) – the regional chapter of the IMO’s women’s movement – whose mandate is to increase the participation and contribution of women to the maritime industry and provide mentorship and other support to female seafarers,” he said.
“Our maritime industry boasts females in all spheres of maritime professions who have made sterling contributions to the development of our industry and continue to drive its success through their commitment, leadership and innovation,” the Director General said.
He pointed out that the maritime community includes not just a significant number of female seafarers, but also female cadets who are seafarers in training. “We are very involved in helping to train the next generation of female seafarers at international standards through the Caribbean Maritime University (CMU), where women are provided with the opportunity to be equipped to pursue seafaring careers,” the Director General said.
Throughout 2019, there will be a strong emphasis within the maritime world on the importance and value of women within the professional ranks. This is largely being driven by the theme for World Maritime Day 2019 – ‘Empowering Women in the Maritime Community’. Admiral Brady also lauded the efforts of seafarers in a more general way. “Today, on the International Day of the Seafarer, we pay tribute to the many men and women who man the global shipping fleet, transporting goods around the world to facilitate trade; fishing the seas to feed global populations; in our navies, protecting our populations, lands and seas; in the tourism sector, helping people to experience and enjoy our oceans first-hand; and in transport, ferrying passengers between our islands,” he said. The Director General thanked them for choosing to become seafarers and often spending many days or weeks away from family and friends and braving all types of weather while at sea.
On the Day of the Seafarer, officials from the Maritime Authority of Jamaica visit the island’s ports to speak with seafarers, listen to concerns and offer support. Tokens are also presented to them.