NGO's, Unions, Maritime on both sides of Tasman unite for the good of Seafarers

A multi organisation discussion and agreement to enhance service to seafarers, fishers and their families in the South West Pacific took place in Wellington mid August.

Initiated by the Apostleship of the Sea (AOSNZ), also known internationally as Stella Maris, the organisation is made up of the Anglican Mission to Seafarers and Stella Maris on both sides of the Tasman. The group includes the seafarers’ unions and governmental maritime authorities in both countries.

Father Jeff Drane, a member of the organisation, said yesterday that the focus on this collaboration will be on safety of vessels, food and water, reasonable lighting and comfort, loading and cargo safety, fair pay and enhanced well -being of all seafarers.

“Social justice will be our main concern, because 95% of all world trade is by shipping. So our collaboration is even more important.”

Despite different origins and perspectives, Fr Drane says “this is now the right time to cooperate on behalf of some of the most exploited workers on the planet, in the spirit of the Maritime Labour Convention in 2006, intended to clean up our oceans and seas.”