The following is the text of a news release from the U.S. Maritime Administration (MarAd):
(WASHINGTON) — The Maritime Administration has signed a $198,000 cooperative agreement with the Ship Operations Cooperative Program (SOCP) to develop interactive computer-based training modules, a best practices tool kit, and other training materials concerning appropriate shipboard climate within the U.S. Merchant Marine. The training material will help mariners better identify and prevent sexual harassment, bullying, retaliation, violence and other coercive behaviors as well as assist industry efforts to aggressively promote a culture of zero tolerance for such behavior. The best practices are to be developed by the end of December.
The development team members from MarAd will include experienced licensed mariners from the agency, both male and female, the MarAd Civil Rights Office, and a contractor experienced in addressing sexual harassment and other coercive behaviors in commercial industries.
SOCP, a nonprofit organization comprised of maritime industry companies and professionals, was established to improve the safety, productivity, efficiency, security, and environmental performance of U.S. vessel operations. This action is part of a larger effort by the DOT, MarAd, and the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy (USMMA) to build an environment of inclusion for all in the industry.