The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) and the International Transport Workers Federation (ITF) are calling on seafarers around the world to sound their ships horns at 12noon local time in commemoration of the International Workers Day on May 1.
The sounding of ships horns will be to recognise the 1.6million seafarers across the world who are unsung heroes of global trade who are keeping countries supplied amidst the COVID-19 global pandemic.
Secretary-General of the ICS said, Guy Platten, said, “Our seafarers are the unsung heroes of global trade and we must not forget the contribution that they are making every day to keep our countries supplied with the goods that we need. The sounding of a ships’ horn in ports on the day that the world recognises the contribution of workers is an ideal way to remind us all of their sacrifice. They are all Heroes at Sea.”
Stephen Cotton, general secretary of the ITF said, “The ITF welcomes this initiative and call on seafarers to sound their ships’ horns in a global expression of solidarity, but importantly to also ensure that the spotlight remains on how critical seafarers are to ensure that essential goods continue to be transported around the world during this crisis. Governments should see this as a call to action to facilitate crew changes and the free movement of seafarers so that they can continue to keep supply chains moving in these unprecedented times.”
The ICS and ITF have been jointly lobbying governments to find a solution to the ongoing crew change crisis that has resulted from measures to by countries around the world to try and stem the spread of COVID-19.