NZ Govt. Allow kiwi seafarers priority access to MIQ rooms

NZ Govt. Allow kiwi seafarers priority access to MIQ rooms

5 April 2021
Signatures: 5,223Next goal: 7,500
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Why this petition matters

Started by NZSeafarers

Kiwi seafarers working internationally have been forgotten. 

Thrown overboard by the New Zealand government. Left in the wake of the ebb and flow of the political engine.

Our government has repeatedly ignored requests for support. Support to allow us to continue what internationally is recognized as essential work.  

Many kiwi seafarers are stuck outside of NZ borders, on vessels, all around the world. These seafarers are unable to return to NZ due to the Managed Isolation Allocation System (MIAS).  
Currently, kiwi seafarers are being put into impossible positions, having their contracts extended; often by months, whilst they still work 12 hours a day - every day.

The MIAS is set up for returning New Zealanders to get a spot in MIQ. But is too rigid and ill equipped to deal with the nature of seafaring. This has been admitted by the government.

A seafarer cannot be expected to book a spot in managed isolation at the beginning of their contract. Aside from the current 4 month wait for a room in NZ MIQ facilities.  It is very common for crew change dates to move a few days or even weeks once the voyage has started, dependent on factors well out of a seafarers control.

Factors such as weather, shipping movements, mechanical breakdowns, a global pandemic or even political turmoil.  The rigidity of the MIAS booking system means if there has been a shift in crew change dates when their employment contracts expire they are unable to return home as the MIAS does not have flexibility built into the system allowing kiwi seafarers to return on short notice, leaving them stranded.

Typical responses from government departments and ministers when advised about this issue have referred to the Emergency Allocation Application. 

This too is not designed for seafarers, there is no specific reference made to seafarers in the current legislation. As such seafarers frequently do not meet the very specific criteria and are denied an emergency spot in MIQ.

Our kiwi seafarers deserve better from our government.  We need a separate MIAS specifically for kiwi seafarers, with more flexible bookings to accommodate the nature of shipping, to ensure that not only can we keep shipping and trade lines open during this terrible time, but that we can return home at the end of our contracts.  This ensures seafarers are both mentally and physically fit to return to work when required to fulfill our duties again on the other side of the world.

Foreign seafarers are taken care of under the current legislation however kiwi seafarers working abroad have been repeatedly ignored. Seafarers are the life blood of the worlds economy, and we've been forgotten.  

Sign our petition to tell the government that this is not good enough. 

We deserve to come home.

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Signatures: 5,223Next goal: 7,500
Support now

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