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Seafarers UK asks ILO to track seafarer suicides amid Covid crisis

GRANT giving charity Seafarers UK has called on the United Nations agency, the International Labour Organisation (ILO), to keep track of suicides at sea, apparently increasing because of the lack of crew changes during the Covid-19 lockdowns

15 July 2020 - 19:00

GRANT giving charity Seafarers UK has called on the United Nations agency, the International Labour Organisation (ILO), to keep track of suicides at sea, apparently increasing because of the lack of crew changes during the Covid-19 lockdowns.

Seafarers UK chief executive Catherine Spencer made the plea that the ILO be the body keeping track of increasing seafarer suicides, reports London's Tanker Operator.



Ms Spencer suggested the lack of data may be because suicides do not result in claims handled by the P&I clubs that provide insurance for most merchant shipowners.



'But that picture is unclear. Suicides at sea may be recorded as accidents. Unless we know the extent of the problem, how can we target our support for seafarers.' she said.



Ms Spencer asked the ILO to 'consider what steps need to be taken to ensure that all seafarer suicides are accurately identified, recorded and shared with organisations like Seafarers UK that fund a wide range of interventions and welfare services, which support the wellbeing of seafarers and their families.'



Seafarers UK (previously King George's Fund for Sailors) is the leading grant-making charity that has been helping seamen for over 100 years, by providing support for seafarers in need and their families.



'The charity supports organisations and projects that make a real difference to people's lives across the Merchant Navy, Fishing Fleets, Royal Navy and Royal Marines,' says the Wikipedia entry.


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