Speaking at a webinar organized by the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS), Nautilus International general secretary Mark Dickinson commented that they are concened that medical assistance, especially when most of the requests are for reasons not linked to Covid 19, is being denied.

He added that

Seafarers are not a health risk for the population they encounter during their sailing from port to port. They must not be forgotten as countries move towards easing their lockdowns.

It is highlighted that a number of international regulations provide for clear and mandatory provisions on medical care, and assistance to facilitate the movement of seafarers, including the Maritime Labour Convention (MLC), the Convention on Facilitation of International Maritime Traffic (FAL), Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping (STCW) and The Convention on the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS).

However, some countries are said to have breache the regulations by not accepting seafarers.

Mr Dickinson stressed that "seafarers have been sidelined and discriminated against by States not implementing the provisions of these conventions,' Mr Dickinson said. 'Most worrying is that these states have set a precedent that raises the question about the authority these conventions have if they can be so blatantly disregarded."