Shipboard Workplace Code of Conduct Policy
CLIA’s members have adopted a policy of industry-wide commitment to safety, security and fair treatment of crewmembers in the shipboard work environment.
Compliance with Regulation
The United Nations has established two specialized agencies to deal with international maritime issues: the International Maritime Organization (IMO) based in London and the International Labor Organization (ILO) based in Geneva. Both organizations have adopted conventions dealing with the safety, health and welfare of seamen. The most widely adopted convention that governs shipboard labor and crew employment practices is ILO 147. ILO 147 has been ratified by 42 countries, including the United States.
Normally the applicable law will be that of the flag state of the ship on which the employee is serving, but the law of the employee's country of residence or, in certain situations, the law of the port state in which a ship is berthed may also be relevant. Port states, such as the United States, have the authority to enforce crew safety regulations. The U.S. Coast Guard has the authority to ensure that the provisions of ILO 147 are adhered to on all ships arriving at United States ports. The United States Public Health Service inspects passenger vessels that call on U.S. ports to ensure the highest public health standards.
General Conditions of Employment
CLIA’s policy is that member cruise lines conduct their worldwide operations according to the highest level of business integrity and fair treatment of employees. All personnel, shipboard and shore side, have the basic right to be respected and treated in a fair and just manner at all times by superiors and fellow employees. As a global business, the cruise lines recognize the value that different cultures bring to the industry;and CLIA encourages workforce diversity, free of discrimination based on gender, race, religion, age, disability, nationality, sexual orientation, social or ethnic origin. CLIA’s members have adopted policy that all crewmembers will be 18 years of age or older.
Hours of Work
Under CLIA’s policy hours of work and/or hours of rest must comply with flag state regulations and/or applicable collective bargaining agreements.
All crewmembers should receive room and board at no cost and live in a clean, well-maintained living environment. CLIA’s policy is that the crew areas on each ship shall be inspected on a regular basis by the ship's master or his representative.
Health and Safety
The shipboard work environment should be monitored and governed through safety and quality management systems. Cruise line sponsored medical care must be provided for all crewmembers working on board under CLIA’s policy and crewmembers that become injured or ill while working are entitled to receive sick leave.
CLIA’s members have committed themselves to a work environment that operates in accordance with Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS), the International Safety Management (ISM) Code, the Standards for Training Certification, and Watchkeeping (STCW), and respective flag state requirements.
ILO Convention 108 requires that ratifying countries issue identification documents to seafarers. The U.S. State Department oversees the issuance of work visas to foreign nationals who sail with ships into U.S. ports. U.S. embassy personnel in the crewmember's country of origin conduct background checks. A cruise ship's work force is pre-screened, and checks are conducted on prospective employees.
Responsibility for the recruitment and employment of seafarers who serve on cruise vessels may be undertaken by third parties, such as ship managers or crew managers, or by the cruise line. When personnel administration or the recruitment of seafarers is delegated to a third party, it is important to ensure that the activities of such agencies are monitored for compliance by the agency with its obligations under international law.
The precise circumstances in which the employer will be responsible for repatriation costs should be included in the employment contract, employment manual or terms and conditions issued to the seafarer.
Crewmembers are afforded wages that are competitive with comparable international pay scales and provided employment opportunities and compensation packages that are equal to or exceed similar positions in the nations from which crew are recruited. Depending on the position, there is also the opportunity for many crewmembers to earn gratuities. Additionally, policies include recruiting at the trainee level and providing education so crewmembers obtain work skills that facilitate promotion and career development.
The cruise industry places the highest priority on the safety and security of its passengers and crew. Every person onboard a cruise ship, from the captain to the cleaning staff and all guests, are to be placed on an official manifest. Passengers and crew may embark or disembark only after passing through security. Once the ship is underway, access is strictly limited to documented employees and fare-paying passengers. Security personnel are to be employed onboard every member line vessel. Federal and state authorities have the right to investigate crimes onboard cruise ships. The FBI has the authority to investigate and prosecute alleged crimes in international waters involving Americans. The U.S. Coast Guard has jurisdiction for inspection and enforcement of international safety and security standards for all ships calling at U.S. ports.
All ships recognize the right of employees to voice complaints. CLIA’s members believe all ships must maintain an environment in which crewmembers may express complaints and obtain resolution of those grievances without fear of retaliation or retribution.
This Shipboard Workplace Code of Conduct is to be made available to all crewmembers.
CLIA is the world's largest cruise industry trade association and is dedicated to the promotion of a safe and secure cruise ship environment. CLIA is composed of cruise lines serving North and South America, Europe, Asia, and Australasia for whom the safety of guests and crew has no higher priority. With the advice and consent of its membership, CLIA advances policies intended to enhance shipboard safety, in some cases calling for best practices in excess of existing legal requirements.