DAY OF THE SEAFARER 2021
25 June 2021
The Centre for International Maritime Affairs, Ghana (CIMAG), joins the International Maritime Organization (IMO), the United Nations (UN) and the Ghana Maritime Authority (GMA) to celebrate June 25, 2021, as the Day of the Seafarer.
The day aims to both advertise for a career at sea and provide information on the profession of the seafarer. In addition, the day of the seafarer is a way to highlight the social and economic importance of this profession. Each year, there is a different motto for the day. The IMO Secretary-General emphasizes the recognition and appreciation that is to be brought to the sailors.
The Day of the Seafarer is an annual and international event coordinated by the International Maritime Organization. We mark this day to celebrate seafarers and let the world know-how and why seafarers are indispensable to everyone. This year, the Day will recognize the unique contributions made by seafarers from all over the world to international seaborne trade, the world economy, and civil society as a whole with the theme “Seafarers: At the core of shipping’s future”
The day recognizes the unique and vital role of seafarers in the global community, and the United Nations recognize the Day of the Seafarer as an observance day.
The Day of the Seafarer was established in 2010 by a resolution adopted at a diplomatic conference in Manila. The revised International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW), the original STCW, was to ensure an international standard of competency and welfare for seafarers, for their safety, and the revision was to ensure the upholding of the Day of the Seafarer as part of this. The convention’s aim was to recognize the contribution of seafarers to society and the economy globally.
The resolution encourages governments, shipping firms, companies associated with sea trade and others, to promote and uphold sea trade and seafarers through the Day of the Seafarer.
The day encourages international, public and official conversations about seafarers and seafaring, and the well-being of those involved in it.
Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, seafarers have faced difficult working conditions including uncertainties about port access, re-supply, crew changeovers and repatriation. Seafarers’ rights to be treated fairly remain at the forefront of IMO’s work.
The 2021 Day of the Seafarer campaign is calling for a fair future for seafarers. The campaign will discuss issues that will still be relevant to seafarers after the pandemic, such as fair treatment of seafarers, fair working conditions, fair training, fair safety, etc.
Hundreds of thousands of seafarers are still working at sea beyond their contracted time and equal numbers are facing financial difficulties, and desperate to relieve crew on ships and start earning wages again.
Day of the Seafarer 2021 will provide a platform to advocate for higher standards of working conditions.
CIMAG, therefore, calls on governments to develop policies that lead to fair treatment of seafarers at ports, and ask private ship companies and owners to provide their employees proper facilities and comfort while they are at sea serving all of us.
ALBERT DERRICK FIATUI