Substandard ships operating on the Black Sea endanger the lives of seafarers every day. Now Ihe International Transport Workers’ Federation member Marine Employees Solidarity Association (DAD-DER) exposes the appalling conditions in a documentary Dark Side of the Black Sea, has been made by International Transport Workers’ Federation member the Marine Employees in English, Turkish and Russian.
A 2012 report uncovered poor standards of living and working conditions, low wages and unseaworthy vessels in use in the Black Sea. A second report in 2014 report showed little change.
Unions in the region have used a week of action as a tool to promote the film to transport workers and to bring the trade union and human rights issues to the attention of a wider audience. Among activities have been ship visits, distribution of DVDs, seafarers’ calendars and magazines, information sessions with seafarers, film screenings, press conferences and visits to maritime institutions to educate future seafarers on the Black Sea project and distribute copies of the film.
Captain Ural Cagirici from DAD-DER says: “We want to promote this film and its core message to transport workers worldwide, but also to a wider audience beyond the trade union movement. The fact that seafarers are risking their lives to make a living isn’t just a trade union issue, it’s a human rights issue
too. At the moment seafarers in this region aren’t getting the protection they need and that’s something we want to change.”