Skip to main content

Seafarers

Fighting for seafarers' rights for 125 years.

The ITF fights passionately for better lives at sea. Representing over 1 million seafarers in over 200 seafarers’ unions across 106 countries, we campaign globally and locally to advance seafarers’ rights and secure decent and safe working conditions. We are fighting exploitation in an industry that for too long has been out of sight and out of mind and navigating the shipping industry towards a sustainable future.

ISSUES

Seafarers move the world – connecting 90% of global trade and supply chains. Seafarers deliver the goods, food and commodities that fuel our economies and sustain our communities. Despite the critical role that seafarers play globally, they routinely face exploitation, which is exacerbated by the Flags of Convenience system. The ITF works tirelessly to advance and uphold seafarers’ rights through collective bargaining, strengthening international and national regulation, and a global inspectorate that monitors and enforces agreements and international law. We stand ready to hold any shipowner, government or company to account for any violation of our rights at sea.

OUR PRIORITIES

  • SUPPLY CHAIN ACCOUNTABILITY

  • RAISING INTERNATIONAL STANDARDS

  • SAFETY

  • FUTURE OF WORK (YOUTH)

  • EQUALITY (WOMEN)

  • RIGHTS

Contact us

Email

To contact an inspector or our dedicated seafarer support staff in London, visit itfseafarers.org

WHAT WE DO

ITF’s Seafarers works to advance and enforce the rights of seafarers. We support seafarers to stand up for their rights, by:

  • Recovering owed wages from shipowners.
  • Getting seafarers home if they have been abandoned.
  • Accessing shore leave in ports and medical attention when they need it.
  • Assisting seafarers to fight criminalisation.
  • Holding rogue shipowners to account who consistently exploit seafarers.
  • Developing wellbeing resources for seafarers and supporting affiliated unions’ wellbeing programmes
WHERE WE FOCUS

To secure better working lives at sea, ITF is:

  • Exposing the broken Flags of Convenience system, which is failing seafarers, consumers and risking our environment.
  • Winning better pay and conditions through the world’s largest global collective bargaining agreement.
  • Enforcing accountability across the maritime supply chain by holding companies to account for the human rights of seafarers moving their cargo.
  • Monitoring and enforcing collective agreements and international maritime law through ITF’s global inspectorate.
  • Raising international standards, strengthening global policy and influencing key international policy institutions including the IMO and ILO.
  • Working with our national-level affiliates to ensure international standards are adopted and implemented by national governments.
  • Supporting national campaigns for the expansion of domestic shipping industries through national cabotage laws.
  • Leading the transition to sustainable shipping and ensuring that our jobs, our climate and our future are all protected through a maritime just transition.
  • Campaigning for a more equal and inclusive industry, through our Women at Sea and Young Seafarers networks.
     

We also work across specific maritime sub-sectors and issues, with industrial task forces established for cabotage, cruise ships and offshore, as well as the committees that provide technical advice to support the ITF’s advocacy for seafarers at the IMO including the Maritime Safety Committee

ON THE GROUND
On the ground
The latest news on the issues affecting us all, and the actions we’re taking to improve our workers' lives and futures.
news 30 Dec 2023

Michael Sacco

The International Transport Workers' Federation (ITF) mourns the passing of Seafarers International Union (SIU) Emeritus President Mike Sacco, a towering figure in the global maritime labour movement
We're driving change
Impact stories

The Shwe Tun Aung Story

The story of an ordinary Burmese seafarer facing oppression at sea - Burmese Cowboy is the tale of Shwe Tun Aung and his journey around the world, opposing corrupt ship owners and a dangerous
TRANSPORT CONNECTS US
Explore Resources
Resources 04 Dec 2023

ITF Seafarers Criminalisation Toolkit

Criminalisation is one of the most serious problems facing seafarers today. When there has been a maritime accident, or a pollution infringement, seafarers have often been detained and denied access
OUR PEOPLE

The ITF Seafarers’ Section brings together more than 200 seafarers’ unions from across the world. We speak with one voice on the issues affecting seafarers globally and locally. Through collective action and coordination, we are winning better lives at sea.

Contact us

 

SECTION COORDINATOR

Fabrizio Barcellona

 

ASSISTANT COORDINATOR

Steve Yandell

------------

MARITIME OPERATIONS COORDINATOR

John Canias

 

INSPECTORATE COORDINATOR

Steve Trowsdale

 

 

 

SECTION COMMITTEE

David Heindel

SIU
,
United States of America
Chair

Dr Conrad Oca

AMOSUP
,
Philippines
1st Vice Chair

Mark Dickinson

NIUK
,
Great Britain
2nd Vice Chair

Lena Dyring

NSU
,
Norway
Seafarers

Odd Rune Malterud

NUME
,
Norway
Maritime Safety Committee Chair

Dorotea Zec

SPH-SUC
,
Croatia
Young Transport Workers co-chair
Africa

Adewale Adeyanju

MWUN
,
Nigeria
Chair

Innocent Gouanfo

SYNIMAC
,
Cameroon
Vice Chair

Stephen Owaki

SUK
,
Kenya
Vice Chair
Arab World

Nermin Al Sharif

GFLTU
,
Libya
Chair

Seddik Berrama

FNTT/UGTA
,
Algeria
Vice Chair
Asia/Pacific

Yoshiyuki Ikeya

JSU
,
Japan
Chair

Thomas Tay

SMOU
,
Singapore
Vice Chair (South East Asia)

Abdulgani Serang

NUSI
,
India
Vice Chair (South Asia)

Vacant

Vice Chair (Pacific)
Europe (ETF Maritime Transport Section)

Kenny Reinhold

SEKO
,
Sweden
Chair

Neven Melvan

SUC
,
Croatia
Vice Chair

Mark Dickinson

NIUK
,
Great Britain
Advisor

Kenny Reinhold

SEKO
,
Sweden
Advisor

Francesco di Fiore

FIT-CISL
,
Italy
Advisor

Susana Pereira-Ventura

Ver.di
,
Germany
Advisor

Odd Rune Malterud

NUME
,
Norway
Ex-Officio member
Latin America/Caribbean

Julia Liliana Becerra

CCUOMM
,
Argentina
Chair

Vacant

Vice Chair

José Julián López

SNTT
,
Colombia
Vice Chair

Michael Annisette

SWWTU
,
Trinidad & Tobago
Vice Chair (Caribbean)
North America

James Given

SIU
,
Canada
Chair

Christian Spain

AMO
,
United States of America
Vice Chair

Adam Vakoc

MEBA
,
United States of America
Vice Chair
OUR AFFILIATES

The ITF Seafarers’ Section has 212 affiliated union from 106 countries representing over  1 million seafarers worldwide.

UILTRASPORTI

Viale del Policlinico 131
Roma
00161
Italy
https://www.uiltrasporti.it/