MISSION to Seafarers and the International Transport Workers’ Federation are calling on government and industry to better fund seafarer welfare.

ITF president Paddy Crumlin and assistant co-ordinator Matt Purcell visited the mission centre in Melbourne this week to meet with MtS regional director for Australia and PNG Sue Dight and MtS Victoria chairman John Lines and CEO Neil James.

Ms Dight said: “The meeting provided an opportunity to work on strategies to bring together all parties, each with unique roles in seafarers welfare. Funding of the welfare services should not rely on donations and grants as per the MLC 2006 Guideline B4.4.4 -Financing of Welfare Facilities”.

In a statement, MtSV said the visit recognises the efforts of both organisations to work together to improve the welfare of seafarers.

“The ITF and the MtS are calling on both state and federal governments along with shipping industry partners to properly fund the provision of seafarer welfare,” the charity said.

“Both organisations are looking to improve the welfare conditions of the seafarers that Australia relies on to deliver over 90% of everything we consume and, also maintain multi-million-dollar shipping assets.”

MtSV said it has been caring for crews visiting Port of Melbourne since 1857 and relies on donations and volunteers to meet seafarers’ welfare needs.

This story has been amended to make it clear the meeting included MtS regional director for Australia and PNG Sue Dight representing the national Mission to Seafarers organisation. Also, a misstatement about the establishment of MtS Victoria was corrected – it has operated since 1857, not 1875.