The UK’s National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT) was demonstrating in Aberdeen on April 21 against poverty pay on Streamline Shipping’s containership MV Daroja.
According to RMT, workers are paid as little as GBP 2.56 (USD 3.28) per hour on freight routes between Aberdeen and Orkney and Shetland on the Cyprus-flagged ship.
“Streamline has … profited from this exploitation, receiving over GBP 3 million from the Scottish taxpayer,” RMT said.
“Shareholders are pocketing millions in dividends whilst migrant workers are mercilessly exploited and local seafarers excluded from work on a maritime freight route between Scottish ports,” RMT added.
The union is calling on the Scottish and UK governments to end this practice by enforcing national minimum wage legislation, requiring Streamline to comply with work permit regulations, increasing freight capacity in the Northern Isle ferry service contract and reviewing Daroja’s safety record.
“RMT has had an excellent response to our SOS2020 protest in Aberdeen this morning as we continue to put these ships of shame under the spotlight. Poverty pay on Streamline Shipping’s MV Daroja is a disgrace. We call on the Scottish Government to take action,” Mick Cash, RMT General Secretary, pointed out.
“Only a nationalised Northern Isles ferry service can meet the needs of local communities and the seafarers that serve them,” Cash further said.
The 4,200 dwt Daroja is owned by German shipping company Hesse Reederei.
The 1997-built boxship is chartered to Streamline, which is headquartered in Aberdeen, until July 31, 2017, according to data provided by VesselsValue.