ILO Convention 188 on vessel labour to enter into force in 2017; will provide "major boost to fight against forced labour"
The Environmental Justice Foundation (EJF) has welcomed the news that the International Labour Organization (ILO) Convention 188 (C188) will come into force next year, "providing a major boost to the fight against forced labor on fishing vessels across the world". Lithuania became the tenth country to ratify the convention, pushing it over a critical threshold for its entry into force. Once in place the convention will establish minimum labor standards to improve the safety, health and medical care for workers on fishing vessels and ensure they have the protection of a written work agreement and the same social security protections as other workers. Lithuania’s ratification follows that of Angola, Argentina, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Congo, Estonia, France, Morocco, Norway and South Africa. Last month, the convention also received the support of the European Council. EJF is now calling on all states to follow the leadership of the existing signatories and swiftly ratify and fully implement the convention, and take the necessary steps to ensure fishing vessels abide by the provisions within it.