What an ITF Inspector can/can’t do

An ITF Inspector CAN
  • Inspect a ship for problems relating to employment and living conditions.
  • Meet with crewmembers ashore.
  • Provide advice and assistance to seafarers.
  • Liaise with the Port State Control on safety matters.
  • Provide advice and support to seafarers on strike.
  • Advise what the legal possibilities are for resolving a particular problem in that port/country.
  • Act as a representative for the crew (power of attorney) in contractual disputes.
  • Recommend a lawyer, in cases where the crew wish to take legal action.
  • Put a seafarer in touch with an ITF affiliated union in their home country.
  • Raise shipboard problems with the shipowner.
  • Put pressure on a shipowner to resolve shipboard problems.
  • Legally board a vessel with an ITF agreement to carry out an inspection.
  • Contact ITF Inspectors, unions and contacts in other countries.
  • Calculate owed wages and handle backpay claims.
  • Speak good English.
  • Put a seafarer in touch with someone who speaks their native language.
  • Put a seafarer in touch with a minister of their own faith.
  • Deal with matters confidentially, as far as possible.
  • Provide copies of ITF publications.
  • Be contacted by phone, mobile, email, fax or mail.
  • Facilitate the signing of ITF approved collective bargaining agreements.
  • Liaise with third parties, such as embassies, flag state authorities or welfare agencies, in handling seafarers’ disputes.
  • Can provide emotional support to seafarers who find themselves hospitalised.
An ITF Inspector CANNOT
  • Do more than their national legislation allows.
  • Always access a ship or terminal.
  • Solve problems without the cooperation of the crew.
  • Guarantee that a seafarer will not lose their job or be blacklisted.
  • Get a seafarer a job on a ship.
  • Change ITF policy.
  • Perform miracles.
  • Act outside of the policy of the ITF or local ITF affiliated unions.
  • Act against the interests of the national union that employs them.
  • Act unlawfully.