NAUTILUS International and the International Transport Workers Federation (ITF) are to call for a rise in monthly pay for the world’s lowest paid mariners.
They are to tell the International Labour Organisation (ILO) the time has come for a significant rise in the global minimum wage for seafarers.
Nautilus International general secretary Mark Dickinson is to lead the seafarers’ delegation on behalf of the ITF at talks in June within the Joint Maritime Commission – an ILO body that has brought together ship owners and seafarer representatives for almost a century.
The Commission is responsible for setting the global minimum wage for seafarers – currently the equivalent of about USD614 (AUD811) a month.
Mr Dickinson said this was scant reward.
“Crewing the world’s roughly 52,000 ships are approximately 1,647,000 seafarers, many of whom work dizzyingly long hours, in dangerous conditions, and for far too many, in return for a pittance,” he said.
He said seafarers commonly worked more than 90 hours a week and were away from home for long periods.
“When you consider what seafarers endure at work and the efficiencies that the merchant navy has achieved in recent years, as well as the importance of cargo carrying to the global community, it is clear that the time has come for a significant rise,” said Mr Dickinson.
“The case I will be making in Geneva is fundamentally a moral one – seafarers deserve a pay rise. Seafarers deliver for us every day, it is time we delivered for them.”