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Union launches new campaign for the fair treatment of maritime professionals on Day of the Seafarers.25 June 2018
Nautilus International is launching a new strategic campaign to highlight the continued threat that criminalisation presents to the maritime profession.
The initiative is getting under way with a new survey to gather seafarers’ views and experiences of the problem – and members are being urged to take part in the research.
Following the results of the survey, the Union will be looking at news ways to support members when they face issue, including a possible mobile app which could allow members to access support and guidance when they need it most, wherever they are in the world.
The survey – which will be open to the 90,000 members of the unions belonging to the Nautilus Federation – aims to update research on seafarers’ rights carried out by the Union in 2010, which showed that over 90% of members were worried about the risk of criminalisation and nearly 70% said it adversely affected their desire to work at sea.
Members have until the end of September to complete the Fair Treatment survey.
General secretary Mark Dickinson commented: ‘The criminalisation of the maritime profession has a damaging impact on not only the individuals who can suffer unfair treatment, but also on recruitment and retention of skilled and experienced personnel.
‘Sadly, seafarers remain at high risk of being treated as scapegoats after accidents at sea, and this new campaign will highlight the issues at the highest levels of government and within the industry, as well as providing practical support to ensure that members’ rights are protected.’
The new survey will be used to produce a report examining members’ views on the subject, as well as including case studies which unions in the Nautilus Federation have been involved in defending. It will also feature updated guidance for members on relevant international conventions and their rights to be treated fairly in the event of an incident.
The campaign will also promote awareness of the Nautilus Federation’s Joint Assistance & Support Network (JASON), which aims to safeguard members’ rights to fair treatment after accidents.
The scheme ensures that reciprocal advice and support can be provided to union members if they are involved in an incident within a port, territory, territorial waters or onboard a vessel flagged in one of the countries covered by the agreement.
Assistance available through JASON includes advice on choosing a local expert lawyer and guidance on local investigation and legal procedures. Support may also involve access to translation services and consular services.