The Liberian Registry has underlined its commitment to protecting the welfare of seafarers on the occasion of the International Maritime Organization’s Day of the Seafarer, which this year takes ‘seafarer wellbeing’, and mental health in particular, as its theme.
Scott Bergeron, CEO of the Liberian International Ship & Corporate Registry (LISCR), the US-based manager of the Liberian Registry, says, “Our seafarers are the lifeblood of our industry. Without them, shipping is nothing, and yet their commitment and efficiency is such that the industry is sometimes in danger of taking them for granted. It is therefore right that IMO should dedicate a specific day each year to recognise this remarkably dedicated workforce, and to highlight the issues they face on a daily basis.
“The Liberian Registry is dedicated to protecting the welfare of seafarers and to ensuring that the maritime industry maintains its commitment to promoting greater understanding of mental health concerns and awareness of the issues facing all onboard personnel. There are over 270,000 active seafarers who are certified by Liberia, of which nearly 100,000 are currently employed on Liberian-flagged ships. In addition, Liberia has taken a leading role in ratifying, implementing and overseeing the application of the Maritime Labour Convention (MLC 2006).
“Everything we do, from our everyday operations to the ongoing development of technical innovation, is designed with the interests of our seafarers in mind. Moreover, our MLC 2006 training programme for Liberian inspectors includes a module on seafarer welfare, developed in co-operation with The Mission to Seafarers, an organisation with which the Liberian Registry enjoys an excellent and highly productive relationship.
“In addition, The Ethiopian Maritime Training Institute (EMTI S.C), part of YCF Group, the parent organisation of LISCR, has successfully trained thousands of cadets and officers, who are now employed on vessels around the world. LISCR also manages the Liberia Maritime Training Institute (LMTI), which opened earlier this year.
“Whatever advances are made in shipping over the coming years, the maritime workforce will remain the industry’s biggest and most valuable asset. Liberia is dedicated to protecting the interests of that workforce, on IMO’s Day of the Seafarer and on every other day.”
Gerard Kenny, Technical Manager of LISCR’s offices in London, recently completed the 106km NightRider charity bike ride around London as a member of the IMO team raising funds for The Mission to Seafarers. He says, “Needless to say, I’m feeling rather fragile and a little weary today, but that’s nothing compared to what seafarers go through every day over prolonged periods at sea.”