Maritime Union backs Greenpeace protest action against bottom trawling

The Maritime Union of New Zealand is supporting the direct action by Greenpeace activists on the Rainbow Warrior against bottom trawling fishing vessels in the Tasman Sea.

Maritime Union General Secretary Trevor Hanson says it has become obvious that overfishing and bad practices such as bottom trawling were wrecking the environment, and would also destroy the industry that depends on the environment.

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Pink Panther Plan won’t solve ship jumping crews

The Maritime Union says a plan by the Department of Labour to track down ship jumping crews by employing a private investigator is questionable at the least.

Maritime Union General Secretary Trevor Hanson says that private investigators may be in favour of the plan as it will ensure an endless income stream for them in the future, but it would not solve ship jumping.

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Fishing industry report confirms worst fears

The Maritime Union says the release of a Government report into employment conditions in the New Zealand fishing industry has confirmed its worst fears.

Maritime Union General Secretary Trevor Hanson says the report has shone light on dark places in regard to the treatment of overseas crews.

“We are disappointed at the Government response to the report considering what is actually going on onboard some of these trawlers.”

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Ferry company safety shortcuts not acceptable

The Maritime Union says attempts to sack the crew of the Cook Strait ferry “Kent” by employers Strait Shipping is driven by attempts by management to bypass new safety regulations.

Maritime Union Wellington Branch Secretary Mike Williams says the threats to sack a crew is because the workers will not compromise on health and safety.

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A maritime tale of struggle and betrayal

“Betrayed: the story of Canadian Merchant Seamen” is a hardhitting new Canadian documentary on the struggle of Canadian merchant seamen against the Canadian Government and ship owners which led to an international strike in 1949.

Maritime workers in New Zealand lent their support to the Canadian seamen who fought a desperate battle to protect their jobs and conditions.

Documentary maker Elaine Brière is promoting “Betrayed” in New Zealand with two screenings in Auckland and Wellington, hosted by the Maritime Union of New Zealand.

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Time to expose conditions of overseas crews on New Zealand coast

The Maritime Union says the weekend incident when a group of Chinese fishermen jumped overboard in Wellington Harbour should be setting alarm bells ringing.

Maritime Union General Secretary Trevor Hanson says the incident is just one of a continuous series of ship jumping and problems experienced by crew onboard foreign and joint venture fishing boats.

“The Maritime Union has been continually pointing out that there is something badly wrong as overseas crews are being subjected to abuse and exploitation while they are in New Zealand waters, and even New Zealand ports.”

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Lithuanian workers issue has opened container of worms

Maritime Union General Secretary Trevor Hanson says there are two major issues at stake – firstly the status of imported workers doing jobs on the waterfront, but living aboard ships, and a second issue of safety and working conditions.

He says it appears that employers are now trying to get around immigration regulations by accommodating workers on board overseas ships, then getting them down the gangplank to work within New Zealand each day.

Mr Hanson says the workers were moved from their current accommodation in converted containers on the waterfront because the Lyttelton Port Company did not believe they were situated safely.

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