At this time of danger for the maritime industry, the ITF has called on Maersk to show responsibility for all its workers in its extended supply chain at sea and ashore.
More specifically, it called on the company to make sure they have in place Personal Protective Equipment to protect against the transmission risks of COVID-19. Also, for full pay to be provided in the unfortunate instances that the virus is caught by any worker, or if that worker has to go into self-isolation as a precaution.
In addition, ships must be able to sail to ensure the export and import of vital goods and medicines, and for this to happen crew changes must be carried out while infection control measures are observed.
According to ITF, many seafarers cannot move freely to safely sign on and off ships. This is because of increasing number of restrictions being placed by national governments on movements in and out of their country. For this reason, governments need to recognise the crucial role of seafarers in this crisis, and for them to be treated as ‘key workers’, regardless of nationality.
The ITF, and our maritime affiliates representing seafarers and dockers, are also asking flag states to take proper responsibility for the health and wellbeing of all workers and passengers onboard their vessels when there are cases of Covid-19, and this includes flags of convenience
In its statement to Maersk, the ITF also reiterated its concern regarding Maersk Line business operations with the Melbourne port of convenience. These issues have been identified, and the ITF has recommended the company that it expects a constructive and committed ongoing dialogue to address them.