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Pontifical Council voices concerns for seafarers in 'Sea Sunday' statement

Catholic World News - July 12, 2013

The Pontifical Council for Migrants has released a statement for “Sea Sunday,” July 14, emphasizing the need for legal protections for seafarers.

The Vatican statement notes that nearly 1.5 million people serve in the world’s commercial fleets, which transport roughly 90% of all manufactured goods. These travelers often work under difficult conditions, the Pontifical Council says:

Multinational crews experience complex living and working conditions on board, months away from their loved ones, abandonment in foreign ports without salaries, criminalization and natural (storms, typhoons, etc.) and human (pirates, shipwreck, etc.) calamities.

The statement welcomes the implementation of the ILO Maritime Labor Convention, which takes effect in August, establishing norms to protect the interests of seafarers.

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