New bill announced to give seafarers fair remuneration

10 May 2022

The Harbours (Seafarers’ Remuneration) Bill has been announced in the Queen’s Speech, given by Prince Charles on 10 May 2022. The bill seeks to protect seafarers by ensuring they receive minimum wage while in UK waters and empowering ports to refuse ferry services who do not pay equivalent to the UK National Minimum Wage.

Cited in the Queens Speech document is the widely publicised incident with P&O ferries, which saw 786 seafarers terminated. The bill well close legislative gaps that allowed this to happen and tod deter other companies from repeating the process.

A consultation has been released asking for opinions on the scope and extent the legislation should be applied. It is a joint undertaking from the Department for Transport, the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, HM Revenue and Customs and the Maritime and Coastguard Agency. The consultation closed on 7 June 2022.

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