Posted on: 27 May 2020
Ince, an international legal and professional services firm, has partnered with global maritime welfare charity Sailors’ Society, one of the largest seafarers’ support charities in the world, to raise awareness for the plight of seafarers. Dubbed the “key workers of the sea”, seafarers are particularly exposed to the effects of the Coronavirus outbreak.
Ince’s Senior Partner Julian Clark, who was previously a professional musician, has donated a track, ‘From the Sea I’ll Come Home’, to Sailors’ Society, in order to raise both awareness and funds for those in peril at sea.
Sailors’ Society provides support to the world’s 1.6 million seafarers and their families, while Ince is known as a global leader in maritime shipping law.
The collaboration comes as the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) named the need for ships to change crews and for seafarers to fly home at the end of their period of services, as two of the biggest challenges facing the shipping industry as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.
With 90% of global trade being moved on the sea, the work of seafarers has a real effect on the lives of all members of our population. The International Chamber of Shipping have suggested without shipping, “the import/export of affordable food and manufactured goods would simply not be possible”. Without the efforts of the seafaring community there would be significant challenges for fuel for consumers’ cars and essential medical supplies.
Julian Clark, Senior Partner, Ince said: “Our key workers in our health services are rightly lauded for their commendable efforts during the Covid-19 pandemic. However, we must ensure that maritime workers, who keep our global trade alive, are supported even if they themselves cannot hear the applause every Thursday night.
“Not only are seafarers facing the same risks and concerns as many land-based key workers, their position is made worse due to the inability to social distance on board their ships, restriction of shore leave and significant challenges to their mental health. It is vital we act to raise awareness and funds to support our seafaring community.”
Adrian Biles, Chief Executive of the Ince Group, said: “We at Ince are delighted to support this worthy initiative with Sailors’ Society. As world leaders in maritime shipping law, we know better than most the challenging circumstances our seafarers find themselves in.
“We are reaching out to key clients and lawyers – including those who themselves have spent time at sea – asking them to support the campaign, in order to raise awareness for this extremely vulnerable class of workers.”
Head of Admiralty, Christian Dwyer said: “Many of our team have themselves spent time at sea and therefore are particularly aware of the dangers and conditions faced on a daily basis by seafarers worldwide. Our hearts go out not only to the community, but also their families at this extremely uncertain time. We hope that the campaign will not only raise awareness, but also the morale of those at sea so that they know that they are thought of and supported”.
Mel Warman, advocacy director, Sailors’ Society said: “We’ve seen a marked increase in calls for help recently, so we are particularly grateful to be partnering with Ince and Love Street band to highlight the enormous strain our seafarers are under. Many seafarers don’t know when they will sign-off and return home, others haven’t been able to start contracts due to lockdowns. The toll on their mental health is apparent.
“We are offering advice, support and financial assistance to those affected. Funds raised through the download of the track will help ensure the continued provision of these vital services.”
The track (From the Sea I’ll Come Home) is available for download here and all the usual digital media including iTunes, Spotify and Amazon Music. All donations will go towards supporting Sailors’ Society’s work caring for seafarers and their families worldwide.