AMSA Seafarers Welfare Advisory Committee Kirki 97,000 tonnes, built 1969 Greek flag tanker, BP charter 21 July 1991, Western Australia THE BOW FELL OFF!! 17,280 tonnes light crude lost. Shipping inquiries Focus on seafarer welfare came about as the result of recommendations coming out of the following inquiries: ► Ships of Shame 1992 ► Ships of Shame (a Sequel) 1995 ► Ship Safe 1998 ► The Seafarers’ Welfare Forum, Melbourne in 2000, hosted by the Australian Government. ► The International Commission on Shipping Report (an inquiry into ship safety completed in 2001) Why was NSWAC formed? What was the nature of the evidence that prompted the Australian (Howard) Government to assist in the formation of NSWAC? Why did so many significant national organisations in the Australian maritime industry become involved in the formation of NSWAC? Evidence from the inquiries… ► The failure of flag states to adequately implement IMO and ILO standards has exposed seafarers to exploitation and abuse. ► The mistreatment of crews affects the safe operation of ships and exposes all who have contact with those ships to unnecessary danger. ► The human factors of shipping accidents and pollution incidents take on a greater significance if crews are fatigued, malnourished and under personal or social pressures. Evidence from the inquiries… ► The abuse and neglect of seafarers constitutes both a violation of human rights and a serious risk factor for ship, port safety and those working in, on, or around such ships. ► Poor quality ships pose a safety threat to human lives, cargo and the marine environment. ► Ship safety problems along with crew fatigue do impact on port safety and efficiency. Recommendations from ICONS There is a need for improved communication between port agencies who can provide early warning of substandard shipping or crew abuse. A formal structure to facilitate communications should be established nationally and within individual ports. It is appropriate that port authorities and the shipping industry contribute to groups that uphold the welfare of seafarers. Outcomes of the Seafarers Forum Consensus to form a national committee with members from Government, welfare agencies, ship owners and agents, maritime unions and ports. Commitment from welfare agencies to rationalise services and facilities. Promotion of a network of agencies working to improve seafarer welfare. Fatigue (long-term) ► Fatigue not only poses a threat to the safety of the seafarers themselves, their fellow crew members and their ship, but it can also impact on the safety and efficiency of port facilities. - Reduction in crew sizes - Changes in ship technology - Shorter turn-around times in port - Lack of access to welfare services (security issues) - Increased use of multi-national crews - Recruitment of poorly trained and unqualified crews - Additional onboard procedural duties (security) - Increasingly longer tours of duty = missing home and family Seafarer needs ► Key welfare issues (as identified in the 2007 ITF report “Port-based Welfare Services for Seafarers”) are: - Seafarer access through port facilities (this after 5 years implementation of the ISPS Code); - Transport to shops / downtown / seafarers centres; - International phone access and cheap phone cards; and - Internet and email access. What is a ship? ► A ship may be defined in 3 ways: • A transport vehicle • A place of work • A social system Categories of violent death • Fatal ship accidents – loss of ship leading to injury and death. • Work fatalities – tripping, falling, slippery decks, falling cargo, but no damage to ship. • Social casualties – suicide, homicide, drug overdose. Safety Culture? ► There is a close correlation between safety and working and living conditions on board ship. ► Sub-standard conditions combined with contracts of long service and extensive working hours leave no room for a safety culture on board. Risk ► The most dangerous risk to the seafarer is not from collisions, explosions, slippery decks or falling cargo, but from social conditions on board. ► The social fatality group is significant—and the most ignored. the most ► Largest potential for crew safety can come through an improvement in social conditions. Improvement in social conditions = MLC 2006 ► Upgraded status at all levels ► More careful selection in recruitment ► Enhanced security and work conditions ► Enhanced education and training ► Improved social environment on board ► Better relations with family ► More leisure time Article VII of the MLC: Social dialogue ► Derogations, exemptions and flexible applications require consultations with representative organizations of ship-owners and seafarers at national level ► Need to reinforce social dialogue at the national level in the maritime sector ► Permanent machinery desirable ► In the absence of relevant social partners at national level, consultations through the Special Tripartite Committee (Article XIII) MLC Regulation 4.4 – Welfare Boards ► Welfare boards should be established at port, regional and national levels to: - review the adequacy of existing facilities and the need for additional facilities; - assist welfare providers and coordination between them. ► Board members should include shipowner and seafarer organisations, competent authorities, voluntary and social bodies. What are the objectives of the AMSA Committee? ► Develop channels of communication aimed at facilitating the effective implementation of the Maritime Labour Convention 2006. ► Develop a database of information for and about Port Welfare Committees and other stakeholders engaged in seafarer welfare. ► Promote communication and networking between stakeholders. What are the objectives of the AMSA Committee? ► Data collection, co-ordination, analysis and dissemination of information nationally. ► Facilitation of better resources and support services to mariners through national channels. ► Raise awareness of the challenges facing the Australian maritime industry. Who is involved in the AMSA Committee? ► Mission to Seafarers ► Australian Shipowners Association ► Ports Australia ► Shipping Australia ► Stella Maris Apostleship of the Sea Who is involved in the AMSA Committee? ► International Transport Workers Federation ► Australian Mariners Welfare Society ► Dept of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations ► Australian Maritime Safety Authority What is the role of a PWC? Liaison with AMSA Committee and port stakeholders. Monitoring of service provision. Research seafarer needs and services. Point of contact for seafarers and agencies. Facilitate better resourced and cohesive range of seafarer welfare services. What are the objectives of a PWC? Identify seafarers needs, support and advocate for welfare agencies. Facilitate access to all seafarer services needed. Liaise with the AMSA Committee on standards for the provision of services. Encourage welfare agencies to gain expertise needed to support of seafarers. Provide data to the AMSA Committee to support research and seafarer advocacy on national level. The quality of life at sea for the seafarer affects the safety of their lives and others, safety of the ship and its cargo, and safety of the environment. To address the welfare of the seafarer, is not just in the interest of the seafarer, but also in the best interest of all stakeholders in the industry. Questions?