Seafarers play a vital role in ensuring the flow of vital goods like food, medicines and medical supplies.
When it comes to delivering goods, it’s not only planes, trains or trucks that are used but also ships. As per estimates of the International Maritime Organization (IMO), ships transport almost 90 per cent of the world’s goods trade. And behind the ships are those who are working hard to ensure that everything runs smoothly. So on International Day of the Seafarer, we take a look at the history and significance of the day and what this year’s campaign is.
Where the COVID-19 pandemic is concerned, seafarers are on the frontline, as they play a vital role in ensuring the flow of vital goods like food, medicines and medical supplies. The coronavirus is not making life easy for them as they face difficult working conditions, uncertainties when it comes to port access, re-supply, crew changeovers and repatriation.
History of International Day of the Seafarer:
The International Maritime Organization, which is a specialised agency of the United Nations responsible for regulating shipping, decided in 2010 to designate June 25 as International Day of the Seafarer. This was done to highlight the fact that almost everything we use in our daily lives is either directly or indirectly affected by sea transport.
Significance of International Day of the Seafarer:
Apart from highlighting the work they do, the purpose of the day is to also thank them for their contribution to the civil society and world economy. Along with that it also aims to recognise the risks and personal costs they bear while on their jobs. Another purpose is to bring global attention to the issues affecting their work and lives, such as piracy.
2020 Campaign of Day of the Seafarer:
This year, the annual Day of the Seafarer will be celebrating its 10th anniversary on June 25, and its campaign will be Seafarers are Key Workers. The campaign seeks to raise awareness of the work seafarers have done during the pandemic and to thank them for their contribution. It also encourages people to treat them with respect and dignity so they can continue the good work they have been doing.
Source: New Agencies