On Wednesday, 17 May 2023, Baroness Vere of Norbiton, the United Kingdom Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Aviation, Maritime and Security), met with Lord Robin Teverson, Patron and David Hammond, CEO of Human Rights at Sea, to discuss the role and initiatives of the organisation in promoting human rights protections at sea.
The meeting covered topical issues across the maritime sector that are currently impacting the NGOs’ work and resources.
These include expansion of enforceable legislation for abuse at sea, the development of the UK’s Maritime 2050 vision with a more inclusive human rights perspective, and how state and civil society can best work together.
Lord Teverson highlighted the 2021-22 House of Lords International Relations and Defence Committee Inquiry into UNCLOS being fit for purpose in the 21st Century; itself triggering wider work including international academic papers, global media engagement and potential policy development for His Majesty’s Government.
CEO, David Hammond, focused on the socialisation and state-led development of the Geneva Declaration on Human Rights at Sea as a potential new international soft-law instrument to drive greater accountability of port, coastal and flag states in addressing human rights abuse at sea.
Maritime Minister Baroness Vere said: “It was insightful to learn about Human Rights at Sea’s work to address important issues within the industry and protect seafarers and others at sea worldwide.
“The UK Flag continues to represent the highest maritime standards. Seafarer welfare and careers are a UK Government priority, and we will continue to work with industry to promote the sector and ensure all seafarers are properly supported on land and at sea.”
David said: “It is fantastic to be engaged with Baroness Vere on the significant contribution Human Rights at Sea is making to achieving its mission, and to highlight how our vital work is removing barriers and driving forward our vision to end human rights abuse at sea.”
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