ITF News Update: 25th June to 1st July 2021

Day of the Seafarer meaningless without vaccines and restored rights: ITF | Seatrade Cruise News – 25th June

This hard-hitting commentary by David W. Heindel, chair of the International Transport Workers’ Federation’s Seafarers’ Section, is a call to action on Day of the Seafarer.


For Day of the Seafarer, WMU and ITF Open Access to Welfare Training | Maritime Executive – 25th June

The World Maritime University (WMU) and the ITF Seafarers’ Trust are delighted to announce that as of 25 June 2021, the ground-breaking online Maritime Welfare Professional Development Programme (MARI-WEL) is to be offered free of charge in recognition of the Day of the Seafarer and the ongoing sacrifices seafarers are making during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Seafarers treated ‘like animals’ to be sent home from ship in Melbourne | The Age – 25th June

A shipping company has agreed to help seven Indonesian seafarers get home from a vessel docked in Port Melbourne after they complained of being bullied and harassed by senior officers on the vessel.


Germany and Cyprus Join Efforts to Vaccinate Seafarers | Maritime Executive – 25th June

Among the efforts to mark the International Day of the Seafarer, the port of Hamburg and Cyprus both announced efforts to expand COVID-19 vaccinations to seafarers. The issue of how to provide vaccinations for seafarers working on ships has been one of the most highlighted industry challenges on this day along with the problems of crew changes brought on by the pandemic.


The Lloyd’s List Podcast: A fair future for seafarers? | Lloyd’s List – 25th June 

IMO secretary-general Kitack Lim joins the podcast this week to reflect on why the industry has struggled to resolve the crew change crisis that has left seafarers globally dealing with overly harsh, inappropriate, even unlawful restrictions on seafarers’ freedom of movement. He also talks openly about the growing problem of crew abandonment, missing casualty investigations and responds to public image concerns raised in recent media coverage.


This Day of the Seafarer, cut the crap and get the crews home | Lloyd’s List – 25th June

Despite the usual outpouring of platitudes and warm words, efforts to address the crew-change crisis have left too many facing abandonment, cancelled repatriation, severe social isolation, and routine unending fatigue as their daily reality

What is the value of sounding ships’ horns in solidarity with seafarers if the powers that be are not even listening?


Vaccines and crew change overshadow Day of the Seafarer | Lloyd’s List – 25th June

Seafarer groups call for vaccines and crew changes as IMO poll shows 73% of seafarers think the pandemic has changed the future of seafaring for the worse

Shipping’s usual tributes and calls to action on Day of the Seafarer were overshadowed by frustration that years of platitudes and calls for governments to act have done little to improve seafarers’ lot


IMO envisages what a ‘fair future for seafarers’ will look like on Day of the Seafarer 2021 | Hellenic Shipping News – 26th June

The Day of the Seafarer, held on 25 June every year, draws global attention to the contribution that seafarers make to world trade. As the world slowly moves through the pandemic, it is more important than ever not only to acknowledge the efforts that seafarers have made to keeping the supply chain open despite extremely challenging conditions, but also to ensure that the future being built is one that is fair to them. This is why IMO’s 2021 Day of the Seafarer campaign has chosen the theme of “A Fair Future for Seafarers”.


Terror threat makes seafarer crew change impossible in northern Mozambique ITF Global – 28th June

Ship owners should stop attempting to perform crew changes in northern Mozambique while seafarers are at risk of attack or kidnapping by violent terrorist groups operating in the region.

The International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) supports the calls by the Norwegian Maritime Unions (NMU) for a crew change suspension until the threat to seafarers’ lives reduces along the Mozambique coast.


Chinese crew onboard international vessels top 120,000 in 2020 | Seatrade Maritime News – 28th June

A record of over 120,000 Chinese seafarers served on international, non-China vessels last year according to figures from the country’s maritime safety administration.


Stateless at sea: Seafarers facing trouble due to ship abandonment CGTN Africa – 28th June

Ship abandonment is among the many challenges that seafarers globally are confronted with, says AndrewMwangura a Maritime Consultant based in Mombasa Kenya. He says between the years 2020 and 2021 a total of at least 76 cases of vessels being abandoned were recorded. He added that International Labour Organization-ILO together with International Maritime Organization-IMO began keeping records of abandoned ships in the past  17 years. Annually approximately 20-25 ships were being abandoned at various ports.


FreightWaves Flashback: Whose flag is the most convenient? | Freight Waves – 28th June

1986: The business of running a flag of convenience is facing up to the depression in worldwide shipping. Competition among open registries to grow more intense


Calm haven for seafarers at Hamad International Airport passes 50,000 visitors in under seven months | Travel Daily News – 29th June

Mariner Lounge in Doha has ceremonial opening to mark International Maritime Organization’s Day of the Seafarer 2021, with hundreds given free flight upgrades as part of commemoration


LGBT+ transport workers need solidarity, not ‘rainbow capitalism’ ITF Seafarers – 30th June

Attitudes to sexual orientation and gender identity have changed for the better all over the world in the last two decades, towards openness and acceptance. For the most part, these attitude changes have been mirrored by improving rights for LGBT+ people and their families in the law, in workplace entitlements, and in equal opportunities in the wider community.


Crew change crisis worsens, Neptune Indicator shows 8.8% of seafarers over contract | SeatradeMaritime News – 1st July

The Covid-19 crisis in many seafarer supply nations hit by the spread of the Delta variant has led to a worsening of the crew change situation with 8.8% of crew employed by top managers now onboard after their contract expiry.