Dear friends and colleagues, On behalf of the Seafarers’ Union of Russia I wish you, your family and friends Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
Very soon, the chimes will advertise us that 2020 is leaving. I am sure this year has become challenging for every family. Due to the coronavirus pandemic seafarers have taken a serious hit: some were forced to continue working much longer in excess of their contracts due to restrictions on movement around the world imposed by governments of countries around the world; for the same reason other seafarers could not join their vessels to change their colleagues staying on board for an unacceptably long time. Meanwhile, the shipping business did not interrupt the delivery of goods for a day.
All this time, as we always are, the Seafarers Union of Russia have supported maritime workers and assisted them to address arising issues on the spot. We secured reliable social benefits and decent wages on the back of recession in the global economy, as well as respect for the rights of seafarers on the back of unfolding crew change crisis. In the light of the unique challenge the coronavirus pandemic has posed we continue to assist seafarers with repatriation, debts recovering, providing safe working conditions on board of ships and welfare of the union members' families.
Coming into the new year with important goals we are full of energy to achieve them. What would the new year be like depends largely on us: on our faith in own strength and on willingness to fight for our rights and interests, desire to live and work in better conditions. For our part we will make every effort to secure for the members of the SUR decent employment conditions, stability and safety.
I would like you to leave all hardships, problems and sorrows in the outgoing year and take with you to the coming year Faith, Hope and Love.
On the eve of these bright family holidays - New Year and Christmas - I wish you peace and harmony, happy changes for better, health and simple human happiness. May the most daring ideas and all your wishes come true in 2021.