Nautilus discusses support for seafarers at UK Parliament seminar

Nautilus International's general secretary, Mark Dickinson, attended a seminar in the UK Parliament with the RMT and Labour Party members to discuss a mandatory seafarers charter and Labour's 'New Deal for Working People'. The event aimed to prevent a repeat of P&O Ferries' mass-sacking and address issues in the maritime industry.
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Nautilus International’s general secretary, Mark Dickinson, participated in a seminar at the UK Parliament with the RMT and members of the Parliamentary Labour Party to discuss support for action on P&O Ferries. The event, chaired by Paula Barker MP, focused on the need for a mandatory seafarers charter and how Labour’s ‘New Deal for Working People’ can benefit seafarers. Shadow transport secretary Louise Haigh MP and deputy leader of the Labour party Angela Rayner committed to a five-point plan to prevent illegal mass-sackings like those at P&O Ferries.

The French government recently approved legislation mandating two-week on/off roster patterns for ferries entering French ports, prompting P&O Ferries to review its crewing model. Nautilus general secretary Mark Dickinson called for Labour to be ambitious in implementing a mandatory charter to prevent exploitation in waters. The seminar also addressed the need for sectoral collective bargaining to continuously improve the impact of a mandatory charter on seafarers.

Shadow maritime and aviation minister Mike Kane reaffirmed Labour’s commitment to a mandatory seafarers’ charter addressing fatigue and other social welfare protections. Shadow employment rights minister Justin Madders discussed how Labour’s New Deal for Working People can address issues raised by the P&O Ferries scandal. Both Nautilus and the RMT emphasized the importance of ensuring that any employment bill extending workers’ rights considers the complexities of maritime employment to provide seafarers with enhanced rights and protections.

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