Seafarers from AKDENIZ RORO DENIZ recovered their few-month wage debts

Several ships  of Turkish AKDENIZ RORO DENIZ were detained  on charges of the  MLC violation   in Novorossiysk. They have bad technical conditions and  the  crew are  often forgotten  to pay  salaries. The seafarers  were able  to  recover   the few-month wage arrears  through the  joint  efforts  of the International Transport Workers' Federation (ITF) and the  Novorossiysk Port State  Control.

Among the detained vessels  are: Moldova-flagged Amazon (1978 built, IMO 7702657),   Panama-flagged Aurelia (1998 built, IMO 9121895),  Panama-flagged Ural (1980 built, IMO 7725386),  Panama-flagged My Rose (1984 built, IMO 8207381). All four  vessels  are  involved in the  vegetable  and fruit shipments from Turkey to Novorossiysk and Gelendghik. The crew of each ship consists  of  10-15 persons, most of whom are from Turkey, Georgia  and  Russia. There  are  no collective agreements  on board and the wage for  a seaman or motorman doesn't  exceed $700.

PSC often detains  the  ships following  their  technical  problems. When the  ITF inspector  and  the  Port State Control officers had interfered, five Georgian  seafarers from M/V My Rose were repatriated from Istanbul and  they were paid $26,000 as wage arrears. The Ural  chief engineer  recovered four-month  debt  or $12,000. The Aurelia crew  was paid  three-month debt or $71,000. Seafarers from Amazon  also got their  salaries  for  few  months.

The work of Port State Control deserves of  special words. Its  attention to violation of  the Maritime Labour Convention  plays an important role. It helps  seafarers in recovering their  wages and  shows  the  most important  thing, particularly that  the MLC works in Russia and   PSC  can influence  on shipowners, Olga  Ananina, the  ITF inspector  in Novorossiysk, points out.

The Panama registry also gave its support:  it specified  the amount  of wage arrears and  seafarers' salary levels and informed that they were  following the situation.  Actually  the representatives of  registries rarely respond to appeals, consequently  the readiness to contact  and to apply pressure  measures to shipowners is very pleased.

I can recommend  to seafarers only  to keep out   of  this shipowner, Olga Ananina said. Don't  be  afraid as soon as possible   to  seek help from unions if you are  in such situation. You shouldn't  wait for  five  months when  a shipowner will pay  your  wage. Such issues often address  after passing an  appeal and  sometimes  through  a threat to address to PSC.