ITF President and ITF Dockers’ Section chair, Paddy Crumlin, today expressed condolences on behalf of the global union federation and its hundreds of dockers’ affiliates, to the family and workmates of a Maritime Union of New Zealand member who was killed working at the Ports of Auckland.
While details are yet to be confirmed, initial reports indicate the stevedoring worker died after “a fall from height” while he was working on a Singaporean-flagged container vessel, the Capitaine Tasman.
“Disappointingly, this is not the first death in recent years to have taken place at the Ports of Auckland,” said Crumlin. “It is not good for any port or national industry to develop a reputation as an unsafe place to send your loved ones to work, wondering if they will come home at the end of their shift. For this family, their loved one didn’t come home. No family should have to go through that,” he said.
The ITF is backing calls by the Maritime Union of New Zealand for a national inquiry into port safety following the unacceptable number of deaths and injuries that took place in New Zealand ports in recent years.
“Any workplace death is devastating for family and for those you work with, and especially in a close workplace community like stevedoring. Our hearts go out to those who will be mourning today, and we affirm our solidarity to support them in getting the answers they deserve,” said Crumlin.
Crumlin said unions were reminding the community that safety on the job is non-negotiable in the run up to International Workers’ Memorial Day on 28 April.