So, lot of petitions were made, a calm protest being carried out on social media and a finished deadline by the maritime unions- we have seen it all. At the end of the day when we are given a choice of dropping tools and say no to work, seems like a solution which neither have positive results on both ends. With world struggling to give us key worker status till now after 3 months lockdown all over, no one ever thought who is making super market shelf full in all these times. For sure this is not their problem, until you where the shoes, you don’t how it feels like.
With so many seafarers ending up in having anniversary of being onboard, all of them have no godfather to help them out (Strong Unions). If today they decide not to work and let the shipping come to haul, believe us, those faces will not be seen in shipping company anymore (this much job insecurity is there). It seems like the army at sea is forgotten, overlooked and last thing to be cared about. An industry with so many rules and regulations (only for seafarers), is still not being able to convince bunch of government for giving us key worker statuses.
All conventions related to seafarers Like MLC etc hold no truer for anyone. There is one thing which we need to look for also. While some reputed companies have rolled back their sleeves and carrying out crew changes at small scale (but at least something is moving), major of them have said complete no to crew changes citing reasons of things not under their control.
As a seaman I never want thanks for keeping world trade on, because it is not going to make a crew change for all of us (which we always needed). Let us be what we are, the unforgotten! Let us be the one without a godfather in the world (Strong Unions), but just do two things,
Pay me for what I have worked for at sea
Send me home when I am done with my contract at sea
And we promise that we will keep paying for the courses that we do after every 5 years and spend my precious money which I earn on hourly basis, not caring for sweat and mental stress we go through. And we are stronger than anyone in the world when it comes to mental health.