Piracy and armed robbery threaten seafarers and the maritime industry today, particularly off Somalia, in the Gulf of Guinea and in the South China Sea (a live piracy and armed robbery report can be found here). The international community has been successful in driving down rates of capture of ships and seafarers in the Indian Ocean, and piracy rates are down to levels seen in the 1990s. But there is continued pirate activity, notably off the coast of West Africa and in South East Asia. Some of this is very violent, and a worrying trend is seafarers being taken off ships to be held for ransom ashore.
Our Maritime Piracy Humanitarian Response Programme, part of our Regional Programme, was established in 2011 as a pan-industry alliance of shipowners, unions, managers, manning agents, insurers and welfare associations, formed to address the three phases of 'pre-, during and post incident'. It aimed to implement a model of assisting seafarers and their families with the humanitarian aspects of a traumatic incident caused by a piracy attack, armed robbery or being taken hostage. We continue to offer the following support to seafarers and their families affected by piracy:
Good Practice Guide for Shipping Companies and Manning Agents: Humanitarian support of seafarers and their families in cases of armed robbery and piracy attack (French)
The purpose of this guidance is to help ships plan their voyage and to detect, avoid, deter, delay and report attacks. Experience has shown application of the recommendations in this publication makes a significant difference to the safety of seafarers.
A free mobile app for seafarers which can be used offline to access help, information and support around the clock
Providing humanitarian support to seafarers and their families in South and South East Asia
Improving seafarers' health and wellbeing through promotion of increased, quality social interaction and rest time
Spotting the signs and responding to concerns
We launched the results of our survey of superyacht crew in London on 3rd December 2018
A guide for shipping companies and ship operators to develop and implement mental health policies
Recognising excellence in seafarers’ welfare provision across the shipping industry
Discouraging Indian seafarers from signing up with unregistered crewing agencies
We provide shipping companies and seafarers with information on staying healthy on board
A free training package suitable for both individual viewing by all crew and training sessions onboard and ashore
Providing seafarers with the right tools and information to keep hydrated on board
A joint initiative looking at the health of women seafarers and where it can be improved