French unions’ cold welcome to ship flying flag for social dumping

May 17, 2018 - 11:38

Trade unionists in France are organising actions in support of the ETF’s Fair Shipping Campaign. This campaign, as part of Fair Transport Europe, strives for the creation of a European maritime space without social dumping and decent terms and conditions for all crew.

At the moment, working conditions for crew are determined by the country where the ship is registered (whose flag the ship is flying), so these registers are often used as a way to decrease standards and costs.

Union activists from the French CGT and CFDT stood ready at the ports of Roscoff and Brest to ‘welcome’ the Connemara, which will service a new line between Cork, Roscoff and Santander for Brittany Ferries. The Connemara is the first ship of Brittany Ferries that is flying the Cypriot flag, even though the route goes nowhere near Cyprus. Other vessels of the same fleet are flying under the French first register.

The boat was late leaving Cork and had to change its port of call from Roscoff to Brest. Activists rushed along the coast to be in time to receive the vessel with flags and slogans. The action will be followed by a slowdown later this year if the company leadership continues to refuse to talk to the unions.

Read more here:

Le marin – Le « Connemara » de la Brittany Ferries a touché la France (in French, behind paywall)