Support the online petition “Seafarers Matter”

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From: Dean Weston <Weston_Dean@itf.org.uk>
Sent: 22 May 2020 12:34
Subject: Support the online petition “Seafarers Matter”

To all Maritime affiliates and the ITF FOC – POC Inspectorate

ITF E-Circular No. 174/D/F/IN/S/SS/2020

Our ref: D/F/IN/S/SS/JS/dw

22 May 2020

Dear Friends

Support the online petition “Seafarers Matter”

As you know the ITF, led by the ITF Seafarers’ Section’s Chair and Vice Chairs and supported by the secretariat, has been working tirelessly to ensure that facilitation of crew change returns to some resembles of normal.

Together with our social partners, both the ICS and the JNG, we have published statements and press releases, done interviews with the media, sent letters to the ILO, IMO and other UN agencies, produced a 12-step plan which was issued by the IMO to its 174 Member States – all with the aim to get crew change moving. At the same time many of our affiliates, especially labour-providing affiliates, signatory affiliates and port state affiliates, have been in constant dialogue with their own governments in an effort to get their governments to put action behind their verbal support of seafarers and adopt procedures to make crew change possible.

There is some movement, but not nearly enough after so many weeks of lockdowns and restrictions. Many seafarers have now been several months on board passed their contract expiration, some have even been on board over 12 months while many others are stranded around the world unable to get home. The UN, the IMO and the ILO have all called on governments to facilitate crew change and there is no longer any reason for governments to postpone.

However, we know that it often takes collective external pressure to get governments to react and act, which is why the ITF has decided to back the online petition “Seafarers Matter” https://seafarersmatter.com/  which was launched by a former Bulgarian seafarer Capt. Andriyan Evtimov and we ask all our maritime affiliates to do so as well. Please share the petition link with your members and on your social media platforms. We know a petition alone will not resolve the situation, but it will send a clear message to governments and the general public that enough is enough – seafarers health and wellbeing matters and they have the right to return safely home and governments and employers have the responsibility to ensure they do.

Thank you and stay healthy.  

In unity

Jacqueline Smith

ITF Maritime Coordinator

International Transport Workers’ Federation

ITF House, 49-60 Borough Road, London, SE1 1DR

Website: www.itfglobal.org


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