Nautilus Applauds Progress on Seafarer Rights

International maritime union Nautilus has welcomed news that the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) has agreed to provide expert help to boost the implementation of its 2006 guidelines on the fair treatment of seafarers after a maritime accident.

The IMO’s legal committee agreed the expert help after considering the results of a survey conducted by Seafarers’ Rights International charity (SRI) on member states’ progress towards implementation. The committee concluded that the next step is for its technical cooperation committee to provide the expert help for those members who need it.

A paper co-sponsored by the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF), the International Federation of Shipmasters’ Associations, Comite Maritieme International and Intermanager was presented to the IMO — based on a survey of member states by SRI.

Of the 45 member states who responded to the survey, most thought their existing laws were adequate or had already incorporated the guidelines into national laws, but just over a third requested further help in understanding and implementing the fair treatment guidelines.

The member states’ survey was a follow up to previous SRI research conducted with 3,480 seafarers which found that human and other legal rights of seafarers contained in the guidelines are often subject to violation.