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Criminalization of seafarers - A Research Project
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Criminalization of seafarers - A Research Project

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Some interesting findings of a Research Project on the following subject : ...

Some interesting findings of a Research Project on the following subject :

" How has criminalization of seafarers impacted the perception of shipping as a career?"

--- by Capt Sahil Puri

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  • “ They were handcuffed and their feet were tied with rope. They are allowed to bathe only once a week and can walk freely for only one hour.” Preetha Shyam
  • “ I am a seaman. I do not have a problem with the heat, or bad food or being in a small room. These are not things I cannot stand. But the awful thing is that at the age of 58 I am a prisoner when I should not be a prisoner. It is the indignity. ” – Capt Laptalo

Criminalization of seafarers - A Research Project Criminalization of seafarers - A Research Project Presentation Transcript

  • RESEARCH PROJECT By Capt. Sahil Puri S AF ARE R ON OF SE ALISATI C R IM IN
  • INTRODUCTION“ A nice clear night, good visibility, vessel somewhere in the South China Sea, nearest land 25 nautical miles off, isolated fishing traffic. Master comes up on the bridge around 2300 hrs , checks the chart(s) and the vessel’s position, calculates the track she would cover during the night and checks for any navigational hazards and other factors so as to fully appraise himself of the situation and when fully satisfied puts down WRITTEN orders. These include strict compliance with master’s & company’s standing orders, giving all vessels – especially fishing vessels, a wide berth and to be called in case of any doubt. Wishing duty officer a good watch, the master goes off to sleep …...”
  • The above could most certainly be any normal day at sea inthe life of a proficient, experienced and law abiding masterbelonging to any nationality, to any company, on any type ofvessel flying the flag of any Maritime State.“…10 hours later he is incarcerated for involuntarymanslaughter….” “Even as the shock and disbelief of the charges against himbaffle his senses, little does he know that for the next 18months he would be living like a criminal in an alien nationwith nothing but a question to haunt him as to what wrongdid he do ! ”
  • UNBELIEVABLE ! AS IT MAY SOUND,THIS IS THE BITTER TRUTH THATEVERY SEAFARER FACES TODAY.
  • “CRIMINALISATION OF SEAFARERS” PAWNS IN POLITICAL AND LEGAL GAMES S AF ARE R ON OF SE ALISATI C R IM IN
  • STATEMENT OF PROBLEM"How has the Criminalization of Seafarers impacted the perception of shipping (sailing) as a career ? How can a solution path to this problem be identified? " RS EA F ARE IO N OF S A LISAT C R IM IN
  • HYPOTHESISi) The instances/cases of ‘criminalisation of seafarers’ has had a very negative impact on the way seafarers in general perceive shipping (sailing) as a career.ii) This issue has negatively impacted seafarers at different levels of shipboard organisation viz. Senior officers, Junior officers and Cadets/Trainees.iii) This issue has negatively impacted seafarers in both the deck as well as engine department.iv) This issue has negatively impacted seafarers serving on both the tankers as well as dry cargo ships.
  • METHODOLOGY& PROCEDURE For the purpose of this research a survey was conducted which had two components: Online survey – links posted on various websites. Group administered survey – physical interaction with seafarers at various training institutes, company office etc. RS EA F ARE IO N OF S A LISAT C R IM IN
  • SAMPLE A total of 306 respondents participated in the survey An attempt was made to have sufficient number of seafarers based on each of the following divisions: Division (i) Senior officers Junior officers Cadets/Trainees Division (ii) Seafarers serving on Tankers Seafarers serving on Dry Cargo ships Division (iii) Seafarers from Deck department Seafarers from Engine department
  • RESULTS-IMPACTThe first section of the survey consisted of statementsassessing the impact of criminalisation. The respondentswere given multiple choice answers and asked to selectwhat was closest to what they feel. RS EA F ARE IO N OF S A LISAT C R IM IN
  • Statement: I fear I can become a victim of criminalisation inspite of following my professional duties judiciously. Q2. I Fear I can become a victim of criminalization inspite of following my professional duties judiciously. 96% 4% 50 % 41 40 % 37 % OF RESPONSES 30 % 20 % 18 10 % 3 1 0 0% ST RONGLY AGREE SOME WHAT UNDECIDED DISAGREE ST RONGLY AGREE AGREE DISAGREE
  • Statement: The issue of criminalisation has affected my morale and enthusiasm towards work and my career. Q3.The issue of criminalisation has affected my morale and enthusiasm towards work and my career. 79% 21% 50 % 40 % 35% OF RESPONSES 30 % 28 20 % 16 15 10 % 4 2 0% STRONGLY AGREE SOME WHAT UNDECIDED DISAGREE STRONGLY AGREE AGREE DISAGREE
  • Statement: The issue of criminalisation has made my lifemore stressful while on board. Q4.The issue of criminalisation has made my life more stressful while on board. 76% 24% 50 % 40 % 31% OF RESPONSES 30 % 25 20 20 % 15 10 % 7 2 0% STRONGLY AGREE AGREE SOME WHAT UNDECIDED DISAGREE STRONGLY AGREE DISAGREE
  • Statement: The fear of Criminalization is a considerablystrong factor that may prompt me to look into alternativecareer options ashore. Q5.The fear of Criminalization is a considerably strong factor that may prompt me to look into alternative career options ashore. 67% 33% 50 % 40 %% OF RESPONSES 30 % 29 20 20 % 18 18 11 10 % 4 0% STRONGLY AGREE AGREE SOME WHAT UNDECIDED DISAGREE STRONGLY AGREE DISAGREE
  • Statement: With Criminalization in mind I would discouragemy family members or friends from taking up shipping(sailing) as a career. Q6.W ith Criminalization in mind I would discourage my family members or friends from taking up shipping (sailing) as a career. 71% 29% 50 % 40 %% OF RESPONSES 30 % 25 25 21 20 % 19 10 % 6 4 0% STRONGLY AGREE AGREE SOME WHAT UNDECIDED DISAGREE STRONGLY AGREE DISAGREE
  • Statement: I feel appropriate and timely action is not beingtaken by the responsible international bodies andgovernments to successfully deal with this problem. Q7.I feel appropriate and timely action is not being taken by the responsible international bodies and governments to successfully deal with this problem. 95% 5% 60 % 56 50 % 40 %% OF RESPONSES 32 30 % 20 % 10 % 8 2 2 1 0% STRONGLY AGREE SOME WHAT UNDECIDED DISAGREE STRONGLY AGREE AGREE DISAGREE
  • Statement: I feel this problem is only going to getaggravated in future. Q8.I feel this problem is only going to get aggravated in future. 90% 10% 50 % 42 40 % 38% OF RESPONSES 30 % 20 % 12 10 % 6 3 1 0% STRONGLY AGREE SOME WHAT UNDECIDED DISAGREE STRONGLY AGREE AGREE DISAGREE
  • Statement: I do not feel the incentives and perks involvedwith shipping (sailing) are at par with the risks involvedparticularly with reference to criminalization. Q9.I do not feel the incentives and perks involved with shipping (sailing) are at par with the risks involved particularly with reference to criminalization. 88% 12% 50 % 40 % 37 34% OF RESPONSES 30 % 20 % 16 10 % 7 4 1 0% STRONGLY AGREE SOME WHAT UNDECIDED DISAGREE STRONGLY AGREE AGREE DISAGREE
  • Statement: With incidents of Criminalization being widelyhighlighted through the media, my family members feelmore insecure sending me out to sea. Q10.W ith incidents of Criminalization being widely highlighted through the media , my family members feel more insecure sending me out to sea. 87% 13% 50 % 40 % 36% OF RESPONSES 30 % 27 23 20 % 10 % 7 5 1 0% STRONGLY AGREE SOME WHAT UNDECIDED DISAGREE STRONGLY AGREE AGREE DISAGREE
  • Statement: I feel the incidents of criminalisation have furthertarnished the image of shipping as a lucrative career option. Q11.I feel the incidents of criminalisation has further tarnished the image of shipping as a lucrative career option. 89% 11% 50 % 42 40 % 31% OF RESPONSES 30 % Y 20 % 16 10 % 8 2 1 0% STRONGLY AGREE AGREE SOME WHAT UNDECIDED DISAGREE STRONGLY AGREE DISAGREE
  • SUMMARY- CONSOLIDATED 52.4% - PRESENT SCENARIO 100% 0 100%WORST POSSIBLE SCENARIO BEST POSSIBLE SCENARIO
  • SUMMARY- CATEGORYSENIOR OFFICERS 64% CADETS/TRAINEES 36% 100% 100% JUNIOR OFFICERS 55%WORST POSSIBLE SCENARIO BEST POSSIBLE SCENARIO
  • SUMMARY- SHIP TYPE TANKERS 56% 100% 100% DRY CARGO 46%WORST POSSIBLE SCENARIO BEST POSSIBLE SCENARIO
  • SUMMARY- SHIP DEPT. DECK OFFICERS 60% 100% 100% ENG OFFICERS 60%WORST POSSIBLE SCENARIO BEST POSSIBLE SCENARIO
  • RESULTS-SOLUTIONIn the second section of the survey the respondents weregiven five possible solutions to the problem ofcriminalisation and were asked to assess these solutionsfrom their perspective. The options consisted of a scalefrom 1 to 10 with ‘1’ indicating ‘Least effective’ and ‘10’indicating ‘Most effective’. RS EA F ARE IO N OF S A LISAT C R IM IN
  • Statement: In case of any incident there should be noincarceration of seafarers without charge i.e they areconsidered innocent until proven guilty and are rightlytreated so. Q12.In case of any incident there should be no incarcenation of seafarers without charge i.e they are considered innocent until proven guilty and are rightly treated so. 70.0 60.0 51.2% OF RESPONDENTS 50.0 40.0 30.0 19.6 20.0 17.7 10.0 2.9 4.3 1.4 1.0 1.9 0.0 0.0 0.0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 EFFECTIVENESS : 1= LEAST EFFECTIVE , 10= MOST EFFECTIVE
  • Statement: Seafarers should be recognized as a specialcategory of workers and given special protection such astrial only under a well established international tribunalrather than under local jurisdiction in case of an incident. Q13.Seafarers should be recognized as a special category of workers and given special protection such as trial only under a well established international tribunal rather than under local jurisdiction in case of an incident. 70.0 60.0 58.4 50.0% OF RESPONDENTS 40.0 30.0 22.0 20.0 12.9 10.0 1.4 2.4 0.5 1.0 0.5 0.0 1.0 0.0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 EFFECTIVENESS : 1= LEAST EFFECTIVE , 10= MOST EFFECTIVE
  • Statement: National laws in various countries thatincriminate the seafarers for acts of pollution even if theyare not intentional or resulting from gross negligence mustbe suitably amended. Q14.National laws in various countries that incriminate the seafarers for acts of pollution even if they are not intentional or resulting from gross negligence must be suitably amended. 70.0 60.0 49.3% OF RESPONDENTS 50.0 40.0 30.0 22.5 20.0 16.3 10.0 5.3 1.0 1.0 1.9 2.4 0.5 0.0 0.0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 EFFECTIVENESS : 1= LEAST EFFECTIVE , 10= M OST EFFECTIVE
  • Statement: There must not be any custodial detention ofseafarers pending the trial i.e they are allowed to return totheir home country and summoned only when required. Q15.There must not be any custodial detention of seafarers pending the trial i.e they are allowed to return to their home country and summoned only when required. 70.0 67.3 60.0% OF RESPONDENTS 50.0 40.0 30.0 20.0 15.9 9.1 10.0 3.8 0.5 0.5 1.9 1.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 EFFECTIVENESS : 1= LEAST EFFECTIVE , 10= M OST EFFECTIVE
  • Statement: The guidelines on the "fair treatment of seafarers"must be made mandatory. Q16.The guidelines on the "fair treatment of seafarers" must be made mandatory. 69.9 70.0 60.0 50.0% OF RESPONDENTS 40.0 30.0 20.0 12.9 13.4 10.0 1.0 1.9 0.5 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.5 0.0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 EFFECTIVENESS : 1= LEAST EFFECTIVE , 10= M OST EFFECTIVE
  • CONCLUSION“Wake up higher authorities .I am young and energetic and pretty much optimistic towards my sea service. Kindly take short notice action on criminalisation. Best regards.” - One of the respondents, a Pakistani cadet The above statement in my opinion symbolises the crux of the problem that this research was aiming to address. It has shades of despair which reflects the helplessness of the respondent, much the same feeling shared by majority of the seafarers that participated in the survey
  • The results clearly reflected that this problem is deeprooted and no matter what level of shipboardorganisation, what department or what type of ship, theissue has had a negative impact.On the contrary the above statement also has shades ofhope and optimism.Same was apparent in the majority of the respondentswho actively came forward to put across their point ofview and their suggestions on how to deal with this issue.The wide acceptance that the solutions mentioned in thequestionnaire received, is in itself a sign of optimism that “Something can be done”
  • The only question however that remains unanswered is “Will it be done??” RS EA F ARE IO N OF S A LISAT C R IM IN
  • Thank you for your attention RS EA F ARE IO N OF S A LISAT C R IM IN