2013 Seafarers’ Welfare Forum
The focus of the forum was to raise awareness of the importance of seafarer health and welfare and to provide an opportunity for delegates to understand how the maritime industry interacts with the seafarers and the remote lifestyle in which they work and live. The guest speakers were able to provide an insight into the working seafarer, their health and well-being and how the industry is responding to these issues, whilst dealing with changes to the statutory requirements such as the implementation of the Maritime Labour Convention, 2006 (MLC, 2006). With an attendance of just over 90 delegates which included representatives from shipping companies, shipping agents, welfare groups and various government departments, it proved the importance of this issue to our industry.
Ship Safety Division General Manager, Allan Schwartz facilitated the forum and presentations were provided by David Burrows (Psychologist), Mission to Seafarers’ – Port Giles volunteers, Australian Shipowners Association, International Transport Workers’ Federation, Darwin Port Authority, Shipping Australia Limited, Rightship, and AMSA.
The forum was able to provide the link between the seafarer, the industry and the MLC, 2006. It also provided the opportunity to launch the change of the AMSA Seafarers’ Welfare Advisory Committee (ASWAC) to the new Australian Seafarers’ Welfare Council—outlining the group’s vision and objectives along with a three-year strategic plan.