The Mission to Seafarers, the maritime welfare charity, recently released its fourth quarter 2022 Seafarers Wellbeing Index and full year summary report, reflecting on the wellbeing of seafarers over the past year with 10 questions ranging from shore leave, physical and mental health, network connectivity, workload, training and more.
海事福利慈善組織The Mission to Seafarers近日發布了2022年第四季度海員幸福指數以及全年總結報告，以10個問題從上岸休假、身心健康、網絡連通、工作量、培訓等方面反映了過去一年海員的幸福感。
The average happiness index for seafarers reached 7.69 (out of 10) in the fourth quarter, reflecting the continuing trend of increasing happiness among seafarers over the past year. Even in areas that have historically been most problematic, such as shore leave and post-shore welfare issues, seafarers' satisfaction is picking up, which is driving the increase in the average happiness index. The data shows that seafarers' happiness levels have gradually increased from a low point in the first quarter of 2022 (5.85), reaching a peak at the end of the year (7.69).
Ten questions in the Wellbeing Questionnaire
In terms of ship type, the ranking of crew happiness from highest to lowest is: container ships, other ship types, cruise ships, bulk carriers, offshore vessels, tankers, general cargo ships.
In terms of age, the highest happiness scores are for seafarers aged 16-25, with older seafarers feeling less happy.
In terms of position, crew happiness is ranked from highest to lowest: deck crew, second mate, first mate, third officer, third mate, deck crew trainee, captain, engine crew, second officer, catering, chief engineer, first officer, engine crew trainee and electrical and mechanical department.
The only area of decline in seafarers' well-being in the Q4 2022 report is internet connectivity, which has proved vital to seafarers' overall morale over the past two years. Seafarers are very concerned about the quality and cost of internet connectivity and increasingly expect to have free or cheap internet access.
Contrary to the perception that increased connectivity increases crew isolation and reduces cohesion, seafarers claim that internet connectivity helps to promote crew unity, for example during the World Cup when crew members watch live matches together.
The report also notes that it is also notable that a large number of seafarers appear to have switched employers or trading patterns to be closer to home in the face of travel restrictions. In addition, an increasing number of seafarers are coming from non-traditional maritime labour markets, such as Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.
2022 Seafarers Happiness Index Averages
Looking back across 2022, seafarers' well-being began to recover from an eight-year low in the first quarter, given the ongoing impact of the epidemic on seafarers' morale over the past few years, including extended contracts, cancelled shore leave and restricted shore-based welfare services. The seafarers' well-being index reached a low of 5.85 in the first quarter. It stood at 7.21 in the second quarter, signalling that for most seafarers the worst effects of the epidemic are over and that travel and contract duration are more certain as the world reopens.
Ben Bailey, Project Director of The Mission to Seafarers, said: "We are delighted and relieved to see that the level of well-being on board has improved over the last full year. Our report shows significant positive progress. While there are still complex issues and challenges in the industry, The Mission to Seafarers organisation would still like to highlight the importance of fair treatment, fair pay, empathy and understanding in improving the prospects of seafarers."
The Mission to Seafarers項目主管Ben Bailey表示：“我們很高興也很欣慰地看到，在過去一整年中，船上的幸福水平有所提高。我們的報告顯示出了重大的積極進展。雖然行業還是存在復雜的問題和挑戰，但The Mission to Seafarers組織仍然要強調公平待遇、合理薪酬、同理心和理解在改善海員前景方面的重要性?！?/span>
At the same time, he noted that there are complex issues that need to be addressed, such as seafarer abandonment and non- or late payment of wages.The Mission to Seafarers will continue to work closely with shipping companies and shore-based managers to bring about positive change and to learn more about seafarers' stories and experiences through surveys. The organisation has also noted that there could be a seafarer recruitment and retention crisis in 2023 if the trend of seafarers moving from deep sea to short-haul or inland waterways continues.
同時，他也指出，還有一些復雜的問題需要解決，如海員遺棄、不支付或延遲支付工資等現象。The Mission to Seafarers將繼續與航運公司和岸上的管理人員密切合作，促成積極的變化，并通過調查了解更多海員的故事和經歷。該組織也注意到，如果海員從深遠海轉到短途或內陸水道的趨勢持續下去，2023年可能會出現海員招聘和留存危機。