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The Lloyd’s List Podcast: Why shipping still needs to focus on human rights at sea

Listen to the latest edition of Lloyd’s List’s weekly podcast — your free weekly briefing on the stories shaping shipping

David Hammond, the founder and chief executive of Human Rights at Sea, explains why the crewing crisis has helped highlight wider abuses in the maritime sector and why we can’t let that attention fade along with coronavirus once the vaccination programme kicks in


THERE is a school of thought that would write off the current crisis in seafarer welfare and human rights as an exceptional side effect of an unprecedented pandemic.

They would be wrong. 

In this week’s podcast we argue the need for the industry to keep human rights at the top of the agenda this year and beyond, because the problems are not going away.

“We have seen the human rights of seafarers jeopardised during the pandemic, This is a clear human rights issue,” argued the secretary general of the IMO last year amid a series of increasingly frustrated and apparently ignored pleas to his member states to take the crewing crisis seriously.

This year’s World Maritime Day theme — “Seafarers: at the core of shipping’s future” comes to you from an industry that last year saw cases of seafarer abandonment hit a record high. An they were only the ones we’ve heard about.

At the murkier end of our industry human rights abuses, sadly continue to go unreported and unremarked upon, even in this podcast.

So with that in mind, we wanted to start the year by inviting David Hammond, the founder and chief executive of Human Rights at Sea, to set out his agenda for the year.

The non-governmental organisation Human Rights at Sea, for those of you no aware of its work, has spent the past seven years defining, developing and sharing the legal and policy basis for addressing the explicit application and enforcement of human rights and highlighting protection gaps.

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