House of Commons
Seafarers and covid-19
EDM #501
Tabled 18 May 2020
2019-21 Session
That this House is deeply concerned about the ongoing challenges faced by Merchant Navy seafarers who are unable to return home due to global covid-19 pandemic restrictions; understands that as a result of port and air route bans for individual travellers there are an estimated 2,000 UK mariners that have been unable to return home to their families, while relief crews cannot be brought in which has resulted in some seafarers being trapped on board their ships for over 120 days; recognises that this extended period of time stranded onboard with no apparent end date is having a significant effect on the physical and mental wellbeing of seafarers, as well as a detrimental impact on their families; acknowledges that merchant shipping handles around 95 per cent of the UK’s internationally traded goods and is essential to the UK’s economy; is concerned that seafarers are the UK’s forgotten key workers during this pandemic, delivering supplies and keeping our shelves stocked; urges the Government to sign up to the International Maritime Organisation’s new plan to ensure crew changeovers can resume; and calls on the Government to do all it can to prioritise the safe return of seafarers to their families and loved ones.