October 27, 2021

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Fiskeri- og sjømatminister Odd Emil Ingebrigtsen (H)

The Fisheries Minister hopes that his “Meto” – NRK Trams and Finmark – will be able to counter local news, television and radio.

Following the government’s introduction of a gender equality strategy for fisheries, a number of stories have surfaced in the media, including harassment, sexual harassment and abuse of female fishermen.

I have also received inquiries into illegal incidents against female fishermen.

Guidance is an administrative responsibility. Corporate culture and attitudes are a management responsibility. In addition, the individual employee certainly has the personal responsibility to behave equally and to comply with Norwegian law such as equality and discrimination law.

Stories coming out in the media show that in some contexts there is unfortunately harassment and bullying. It is emphasized that these can be criminal acts, except that they are unacceptable and reprehensible.

We therefore call on shipping companies to take responsibility and take drastic action against cases of harassment and bullying. Preventing unacceptable behavior by constantly discussing gender equality and culture on boards and organizational tasks will yield results. Gender equality and how to treat female colleagues should be on the agenda and discussed at every meeting.

The Government has recently introduced “Better Equality in Fisheries” and encourages active use of vessel owners in the prevention and understanding of members. Open letter to all fishing boat companies and vessel owners. Prohibited under the Working Environment Act and the Equality and Discrimination Act. Sexual harassment is defined as unwanted sexual attention, which is the intent or effect of attacking, threatening, hostile, insulting, insulting or harassing other parties.

It is the duty of the employer to take care of its employees. The employer should organize, facilitate and guide the work to avoid employee harassment and other inappropriate behavior. Shipping companies are encouraged to review their ethical guidelines regularly.

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The Board’s approach and discussion of gender equality in fisheries often reflects the company’s behavior and should therefore be taken seriously.

My successor as the Minister of Fisheries and Seafood I request you to consider further measures that will be implemented to tackle the problem. This is, for example:

For example, a fishing permit and / or a police certificate required to be a captain.

In addition, we are asked today to consider appointing a Special Ombudsman for Women in the Equality and Discrimination Ombudsman Fishing Industry and the establishment of a separate notification agency for women in the fishing industry.

We have to take responsibility together. The fishing industry should be a safe workplace for all women – whether it’s your own or someone else’s daughter. We all have a responsibility to weed out the “rotten apples” in the fishing industry. These rogue players are destroying other businesses. Most serious companies in particular need to take responsibility for this together. We must do everything we can to ensure that no one experiences this kind of bullying, persecution and outrageous behavior.