London. UK. / Paris. France. On 8 June 2021, on the occasion of this year’s United Nations World Oceans Day with the theme of: "Ocean: Life and Livelihoods", Human Rights at Sea and global law firm Shearman & Sterling LLP held a webinar entitled “Confronting the Human Rights Crisis in Fisheries: How Arbitration Can Improve Fishers’ Access to Justice”, which is now available to view and download.
London. UK. / Suva. Fiji. Following the public highlighting on 16 January by Human Rights at Sea (HRAS) of the case of two exploited Indonesian fishers of the Chinese-owned, Fijian-flagged He Shun 38 (No.00359) vessel, both crew are reported as being repatriated to Indonesia on Thursday 28th January with some wages paid. Further, the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) has reported to HRAS that the Fiji Fishing Industry Association (FFIA) has de-listed the He Shun from MSC-Certification.
London. UK. / Indonesia. The prevalent issue of poor and abusive conditions for Indonesian migrant fishers continues to be highlighted internationally by local NGOs. Destructive Fishing Watch (DFW) Indonesia has been sharing evidence gathered to further shine a spotlight on fisher's working circumstances, including during the COVID-19 pandemic, which fail to reflect the safety and well-being intent of the likes of the ILO C188 Working in Fishing Convention and highlight failures to look after migrant crew when contracts are terminated.
London, UK. / Suva, Fiji. Humanitarian ship visitors working with the UK charitable NGO, Human Rights at Sea, have been alerted to exploited Indonesian crew on a Chinese owned Fijian-flagged long-liner abandoned in the Port of Suva without their wages apparently being paid for 12 months. Crew circumstances include having to continue to work onboard without pay, having minimal access to communications, allegedly being kept on the vessel without shore access and their identity documents being retained.
London. UK. Increasing numbers of cases of human and labour rights abuse towards Indonesian fishers on foreign flagged vessels are coming to light. Most recently, international NGOs, including Human Rights at Sea, have been contacted with evidence highlighting the fishers' plight, the poor working conditions in which they are forced to work and allegations of ill-treatment resulting in deaths at sea.
London. UK. On World Day against Human Trafficking, the Seafood Working Group, of which Human Rights at Sea is a member, has put out a statement in response to Thailand’s ranking in the 2020 Trafficking in Persons (TIP) report. The SWG is a coalition of over 60 labor rights, human rights, and environmental non-governmental organizations.
"‘Once I was transshipped [the action of transferring fish or crew between vessels]. I was put into a steel crate (the one they keep fish in) along with my belongings and my papers in a plastic bag. They put floats or buoys around the crate so that it would float; they gave me a torch. It was 5 o’clock in the afternoon when they dropped me over the side with my gear but it wasn’t until nearly 10 o’clock before the second vessel came and picked me up: I was all alone, wet and floating in a steel crate, in the black ocean."
"My ultimate aim is that fishermen, flag state nationals and migrant fishermen alike, are treated in accordance with universal human rights and the standards on safety at sea in fishing in its broad sense and that the next common fisheries policy incorporates the outlines of a responsible policy on safety at sea protecting life and property within the fishing sector." Ment van der Zwan. London.UK. The need for improvement in the awareness, understanding and betterment of human rights standards in the global fishing industry and associated supply chains continues to be a focal point of advocacy by international supporters of the concept that 'human rights apply at sea, as they do on land'.
London. UK. FISHERIES. The Taiwanese Government has responded to the Greenpeace allegations of forced labour practices in the Taiwanese fleet from the 2019 report: '“SEABOUND: The Journey to Modern Slavery on the High Seas”. The Fisheries Agency of Taiwan has now forwarded the cases to the Kaohsiung District Prosecutors Office.
'After the pilgrims and students then we will come to the fishermen'. London. UK. Human Rights at Sea has been requested to raise the plight of up to an assessed 1000 Indian fishermen stranded in and around Kish Island, Iran, without work and pay since 24 February, and who are now running very short on staple foods which it is reported will only last for several more days.
London. UK. A Scottish skipper has been found guilty at Peterhead Sheriff's Court of assault and racially-aggravated harassment of five non-EEA crew members over a period of six years. It is reported that: "Gordon Hadden admitted racially harassing Jasen Gicale, Jason Gorgonia Gulane, Jay Suycano, Rolan Gulane Barte and Noly Frejoles on board the Serenity on various occasions between August 2013 and August 2019."
Press Release Immediate London.UK. Human Rights at Sea has published a new case study exploring the issue of Philippine manning agencies supplying Non-EEA crew to the UK Fisheries industry and the issues this raises in terms of transparency of practice, due diligence to assure welfare safeguards for crew, and the necessary safeguards required to ensure...
PRESS RELEASE Immediate Marlins and Human Rights at Sea new Diversity and Inclusion at Sea course goes live Marlins, V.Group’s training business and Human Rights at Sea collaboration on a Diversity and Inclusion at Sea e-learning course is now available and being offered free of charge to individual seafarers for a limited time via Marlin’s...
PRESS RELEASE Immediate Thailand prematurely upgraded in annual anti-trafficking report Move unwarranted and could slow progress, according to international coalition (Washington, DC) – The U.S. State Department has removed Thailand from the lowest ranking in its annual Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report in a move that an international coalition of human rights, labor and...
“Once vessels are flagged to New Zealand the full range of New Zealand law including employment relations and workplace health and safety law will automatically apply and be enforceable.” Hon NATHAN GUY (Minister for Primary Industries) 14 February 2013 Over the last decade, the New Zealand fishing industry has been shaken by a series of...