ILO MLC Frequently Asked Questions

GENERAL QUESTIONS

  • What is the Maritime Labour Convention, 2006 (MLC, 2006)?

  • Why was a new Convention needed?

  • What are the basic aims of the MLC?

  • Who is a seafarer?

  • What is the "no more favourable treatment" clause

  • What is new?

  • Is an armed guard a seafarer?

  • Are personnel primarily employed to work on offshore drilling rigs and platforms seafarers?

  • Are entertainment staff on board a vessel seafarers?

  • What do the titles cover?

  • Does the MLC directly apply to shipowners, ships and seafarers?

  • What measures must each country take to ensure proper application of the MLC?

  • What is the Code?

  • What is the difference between Articles, Regulations, Standards and Guidelines?

  • What is a substantially equivalent provision?

  • Why are there Part B Guidelines and what is their status?

  • What are the 2008 ILO Guidelines, for flag State inspections and port State control officers?

  • Does the MLC require countries to honour the ILO fundamental Conventions?

  • Is the MLC easier for countries to ratify and to implement?

  • What is the entry into force date?

  • Will the MLC, 2006 be well ratified?

  • Where would I get a list of countries that have ratified the MLC?

  • Why are some countries listed on the ILO MLC, 2006 website as ratifying when the Convention is not yet in force?

  • What will happen to maritime labour Conventions adopted before 2006 and which are replaced by the MLC?

  • How can the MLC be updated?

  • What is the Special Tripartite Committee?

  • What is the status of the Preamble and the Explanatory Note in the MLC, 2006?

  • What does the Convention mean by the term Member?

  • Who is the competent authority?

  • Who is covered by the MLC, 2006?

  • Does the MLC, 2006 apply to cadets?

  • What ships does the MLC, 2006 apply to?

  • When is a ship considered ordinarily engaged in commercial activities?

  • What are sheltered waters?

  • Can a ratifying country exempt certain provisions of the MLC?

  • Is there a general tonnage limitation?

  • Does the MLC cover ships that do not go on international voyages?

  • Are ships that already exist when the Convention is ratified by a country excluded?

  • Which Yachts are covered by the MLC?

  • Does the Convention apply to offshore resource extraction or similar vessels?

  • Who is the shipowner?

  • How can a country ratify the MLC, 2006? What documents need to be filed?

  • Does the MLC, 2006, address the problem of piracy?

  • Does a country have to adopt national laws to ratify the MLC, 2006?

  • Where can I get the contact information for the national competent authority responsible for the MLC, 2006?

  • What is the role of the ILO in implementing the MLC, 2006?

  • Is the MLC, 2006, relevant for shipowners registered in a country that has not ratified the MLC, 2006?

  • Is the MLC, 2006, relevant to seafarers based from non-ratifying countries?

  • Where can I obtain a copy of the report form for the MLC, 2006, that each ratifying country has to make to the ILO?

  • Does the ILO have a database of national laws, regulations or implementing measures?

  • Does the MLC, 2006, apply to entertainers and hotel service staff?

  • Does the MLC, 2006, mean that seafarers based in countries that have not ratified the MLC, 2006, cannot be employed on board ships flying the flag of a country that has ratified?

MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS FOR SEAFARERS TO WORK ON A SHIP

  • What is the Minimum age?

  • Who determines work likely to jeopardize the safety or health of seafarers under 18?

  • Is there an international standard to determine specific night hours or is it up to the state?

  • Will a medical examination under STCW meet MLC requirements?

  • What is the medical certificate validity period?

  • Can a seafarer ever work without a medical certificate and what happens if a medical certificate expires during a voyage and who can issue one?

  • Can a ship's doctor issue a medical certificate?

  • Is a medical certificate issued in the seafarer's home country valid for work on a ship flying the flag of a different country?

  • Is there a standard form for a medical certificate and any international guidance regarding medical examinations?

  • Does STCW certification meet MLC training requirements?

  • Does the training requirement apply to seafarers not covered by STCW?

  • Does the Officers' Competency Certificates Convention, 1946 (No. 74) still apply?

  • What is a seafarer recruitment and placement service?

  • Must seafarer recruitment and placement services be established and does this apply to a shipowner recruitment department?

  • Who is obligated and what are the shipowners’ responsibilities under Regulation 1.4?

  • What happens if seafarers are recruited from a country not ratifying the MLC

  • Can recruitment and placement services charge seafarers fees?

  • What is the system of protection against monetary loss required of private seafarer recruitment and placement services?

  • What is the situation of young persons aged 16 in a recognized maritime education or training programme?

  • Is a recruitment department operated by a shipowner considered a private recruitment and placement service?

  • Who pays for documents that seafarers need to be able to travel to join ship?

  • Must seafarer recruitment and services be certified for compliance with the MLC, 2006?

  • Will a certificate of MLC, 2006, compliance for a recruitment and placement service issued by a recognized organization meet the MLC, 2006, requirements?

  • Does the MLC, 2006, mean that seafarers based in countries that have not ratified the MLC, 2006, cannot be employed on board ships flying the flag of a country that has ratified?

  • Does an employment and recruitment service that occasionally places seafarers on board ship such as cruise ships have to comply with the MLC, 2006, requirements?

  • Is a professional or other association or service that posts employment opportunities for its members a seafarers’ recruitment and placement service under the MLC, 2006?

  • Why are there no Code provisions under Regulation 1.3?

  • Must ships’ cooks be trained?

  • What does personal safety training on board ship mean? Is there a specific training programme?

CONDITIONS OF EMPLOYMENT

  • What is a seafarers' employment agreement (SEA)?

  • Does the MLC require seafarers to have a copy of the original signed seafarers' employment agreement (SEA) on board?

  • How can an SEA include a collective bargaining agreement?

  • Who signs a SEA and can the employer supplying a seafarer sign an SEA as the shipowner?

  • Does the flag state accept electronic signatures on SEAs?

  • What is the record of employment for seafarers?

  • Does the MLC set a minimum wage for seafarers?

  • How frequently are seafarers paid?

  • Can seafarers be charged for the cost of sending allotments of wages to family members?

  • Are work and rest hours both regulated?

  • What are the standards for minimum hours of rest and maximum hours of work?

  • What is meant by any 24-hour period?

  • Will choosing hours of work or hours of rest yield a different result and are there any exceptions to such standards?

  • How does Regulation 2.3 affect STCW requirements?

  • Do minimum hours of rest/maximum hours of work requirements apply to ships masters?

  • Do hours of rest/work standards apply in an emergency?

  • What is a seafarer's minimum entitlement to paid leave?

  • Can a seafarer agree to be paid rather than taking paid leave?

  • What is the repatriation entitlement, how is it ensured and how are costs paid?

  • What costs must a shipowner cover when a seafarer is repatriated?

  • Can a seafarer be charged repatriation costs?

  • Who pays compensation to seafarers on a ship's loss or foundering?

  • Is there a minimum manning level for ships?

  • Does the manning level equal manning required in a ship's safe manning document (SMD)?

  • Who is obligated with regard to Career and Skill Development and Opportunities for seafaring Employment?

  • Can a seafarer who does not adequately perform be sent home, and can the seafarer be sent home and asked to pay for flights etc?

  • Can a seafarer under the age of 18 ever be expected to work at night?

  • Do self-employed seafarers require a seafarers’ employment agreement (SEA)?

  • Is the maximum period that a seafarer can serve on board a ship 11 months before taking one month of paid annual leave?

  • Some airlines are charging for luggage above a minimum weight. What is the situation for seafarers under the MLC, 2006?

  • Guideline B2.6, paragraph 1, on seafarers' compensation for the ship's loss or foundering, indicates that the amount may be limited to two months’ wages. Does this mean it can be less than two months wages?

ACCOMMODATION, RECREATIONAL FACILITIES, FOOD AND CATERING

  • Do Title 3 accommodation requirements apply to existing ships?

  • Can sleeping rooms be below a ship's load line?

  • What are special purpose ships?

  • Do seafarers require individual sleeping rooms?

  • Does the MLC, 2006 require cadets to have a single cabin?

  • Must seafarers have sleeping rooms on board ships performing day trips?

  • Must each seafarer have private sanitary facilities?

  • Can floor area of adjacent private or semi-private sanitary facilities be calculated in the minimum floor area of sleeping rooms?

  • Can less space be provided in sleeping accommodation in return for greater comfort?

  • Why are frequent ship accommodation inspections required and who should conduct them?

  • Is flexibility provided for accommodation and recreational facility requirements?

  • Is there a minimum standard for food served to seafarers on board?

  • Can seafarers be charged for food on board ship?

  • Must ships' cooks be certified and all ships have a full-time ships' cook?

  • What will the Shipowner have to make available onboard in order to comply with Guideline B3.1.11?

  • Does the MLC require Shipping companies to have certification regarding provision of fresh water?

  • If the working and living conditions on board a ship are poor, can the ILO help?

  • The MLC, 2006, requires adequate lighting. Are there any specific standards?

HEALTH PROTECTION, MEDICAL CARE, WELFARE AND SOCIAL SECURITY PROTECTION

  • What kinds of treatment are considered as medical care?

  • Must every ship have a ship's doctor?

  • What should the medical chest contain and is there a standard ship's medical guide?

  • Is there a model medical report form for use on board ships?

  • What is shipowner liability and when does it apply?

  • What does shipowner’s liability cover?

  • Is shipowner liability limited and is particular financial security specified?

  • Are there any exceptions to shipowner liability?

  • We have heard that there are companies offering insurance policies to cover shipowners liabilities when seafarers are abandoned. Is this necessary?

  • How are on-board health & safety protection and accident prevention determined?

  • When must a ship's safety committee be established?

  • Why are shore-based seafarers welfare facilities required and what are the port state obligations for these?

  • What kinds of services should be provided in welfare facilities?

  • Who must fund welfare facilities?

  • Must seafarers be allowed ashore to access welfare centres?

  • What is social security and social protection?

  • What social security is required?

  • What is meant by the nine branches of social security?

  • What is complementary social security protection?

  • What should a country with a national social security system verify before ratification?

  • Is there a form to submit information on social security under the MLC, 2006?

  • Where can I obtain information about the social security protection that is provided by each country that has ratified the MLC, 2006?

  • How is social security provided in the MLC?

  • To what extent are shipowners liable if seafarers on their ships are covered by a state (public) system of compensation in the case of sickness or injury?

  • Can seafarers complain directly to the flag State competent authority or an inspector instead of using the on-board complaint procedure?

  • Does the MLC address the issue of abandonment

  • Does the MLC address the issue of death and personal Injury?

  • Is there any international guidance regarding medical examinations?

  • Is there guidance on international occupational safety and health standards?

  • Guideline B4.1 paragraph 3, of the MLC, 2006, refers to the Document for Guidance, 1985 – An international maritime training guide. Where can I get copy as it appears out of print?

COMPLIANCE AND ENFORCEMENT

  • Should a ship flying the flag of a member state holding an expired MLC/interim MLC or not having on board a MLC or DMLC or interim mlc be recorded as a deficiency in psc report?

  • Can a State, which is not a Member of MLC, issue a Maritime Labour Certificate for a ship that flies the flag of that State?

  • Why does the ILO say it supervises the implementation of Conventions? What does it mean? Does it inspect ships?

  • Where can I get training on MLC 2006, inspections?

  • What is meant by the “no more favourable treatment” clause?

  • Which governments are complying with the 2006 resolution that calls on governments to phase in certification, starting with bulk carriers/passenger ships, and to allow ships to sail without certificates for 12 months after entry into force?

  • What are labour-supplying responsibilities?

  • Are complaints confidential?

  • Who is authorized for onshore complaint handling?

  • Who can make an onshore complaint?

  • What are the onshore complaint handling procedures and who should develop them?

  • When can an authorized port State officer detain a ship?

  • Who can complain under Standard A5.2.1?

  • What if a complaint is outside the list of 14 certification areas?

  • When may foreign ships of non-ratifying countries be inspected in a port State?

  • If a ship's maritime labour certificate and declaration of maritime labour compliance are in order can there be a further inspection?

  • What should Port State Control inspect?

  • Is there guidance or a model for a port State inspection and monitoring system and to provide guidance to authorized officers?

  • Who is an authorized officer for port State control?

  • Is a port State required to inspect all foreign ships?

  • What is the purpose of a port State inspection and port State control?

  • What is a port State?

  • For a marine casualty, must an official inquiry be held?

  • How do seafarers obtain the ship's on-board complaints procedure and must seafarers always use this procedure?

  • Who should develop the on-board complaint procedures and are there any models to follow?

  • What is an on-board complaints procedure?

  • Can a flag State inspector prevent a ship from moving?

  • Are there any model guidelines for flag State inspectors?

  • Does a change of RO affect validity of issued certificates?

  • Can a maritime labour certificate be withdrawn?

  • When does a maritime labour certificate cease to be valid?

  • Does an interim maritime labour certificate require a DMLC and can it be renewed?

  • When can an Interim maritime labour certificate be issued?

  • How long is a maritime labour certificate valid for?

  • Must an original maritime labour certificate and DMLC be carried on board?

  • Can an RO issue a declaration of maritime labour compliance (DMLC)?

  • What should Part II of the DMLC contain?

  • What detail does Part I of the Declaration of Maritime Labour Compliance (DMLC) require?

  • Must all ships be certified under Regulation 5.1.3?

  • Do MLC requirements excluded from the list of 14 areas in Appendix A5-I have to be inspected?

  • What is the relationship between Title 5 and other provisions?

  • Does substantial equivalence apply to Title 5?

  • What is a flag State?

  • Can a flag State delegate its responsibilities?

  • Is there a model flag State inspection and certification system?

  • What is a Recognized Organization (RO) and how is it authorized by a flag State?

  • Must all ships be inspected?

  • What tasks can an RO conduct?

  • What are the 14 certification areas?

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