“Globally there are now 400,000 seafarers who are either stranded at sea and have overrun their contracts or are at shore waiting to start their tours of duty. The 8th July is a perfect moment to remind those politicians who are meeting to consider the impact of Covid-19 to classify these unsung heroes of global trade as key workers and to instigate seafarer air-bridges to enable safe travel,” said Guy Platten, secretary-general of the ICS.
A similar event took place on 1 May with the under the banner of #HeroesAtSeaShoutout but despite the combined efforts of the industry, unions and the IMO large scale crew changes difficult or impossible in the majority of ports around the world.
A 12-step set of protocols for crew change drawn up by the industry and published by the IMO is yet to be adopted by governments and most have yet to recognise seafarers as key workers.
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