In 2016, The International Organization for Women in the Seafood Industry – WSI was co-founded by Marie-Christine Monfort and other gender and seafood experts as a feminist organization situated in the center of the battle for achieving gender equality and women’s empowerment in seafood companies and international institutions. The incredible task carried out thanks to her vision, drive and immense work has shaped the understanding and conversations in this topic worldwide. Over the past six years, WSI has been an influential international feminist organization and recognized as a first-class source of reliable scientific information on gender issues in many publications, fora and events.
2022 saw a transition in leadership with Camille Cherques taking up the role of Director to lead WSI in the steps of concluding projects and ongoing work. The board of administrators and members thank both Marie Christine and Camille for their dedication and hard work in this challenging role.
The topic of gender equality remains a difficult space especially in the seafood industry – although strides have been made, much work remains to be done for gender equality to be recognized for the basic human right it is. Despite years of hard labour, there is still a major lack of awareness and understanding of the complexity of these social issues. This is unfortunately also reflected in the lack of resources that are directed for this topic. It is in part due to this lack of sustainable economic model that we announce WSI is closing its doors on December 31,2022. The decision was made with much regret and following long deliberations; however, the spirit of the work remains. Hence, as WSI ceases to exist as an independent NGO thereby creating a great void in advocacy, WSI is hopeful that other organizations, companies and institutions – working in fisheries and aquaculture, human and social rights, feminism and gender equality – will start or continue to build on WSI’s legacy and unicity in order to keep the fight for a seafood industry free of gender inequalities, free of sexism and gender-based discriminations, where everybody enjoy equal opportunities and working conditions.
All publications and resources produced by WSI will remain available for any interested party on its website www.womeninseafood.org until the end of November 2023.
We, as the board members, would like to thank deeply everyone that has been involved, contributed, supported, and helped us on voicing the gender issues within the seafood industry, especially WSI members, partners, and sponsors.
Closing WSI does not mean that the gender topic will be closing too, and we encourage each of you to continue changing mentalities, processes and help on raising this matter that will impact profitably our companies and institutions for generations to come.
The Board Members,
Carl-Christian, Christelle, Benjamin, Jennifer and Hanaa