COVID-19 Safety Updates

FDA Approves First COVID-19 Vaccine

From the FDA: Approval Signifies Key Achievement for Public Health For Immediate Release: August 23, 2021 Today, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the first COVID-19 vaccine. The vaccine has been known as the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine, and will now be marketed as Comirnaty (koe-mir’-na-tee), for the prevention of COVID-19 disease in individuals 16…

Vaccine Mandate Imminent for Military

U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III on Aug. 9 issued the following “memorandum for all Department of Defense employees.” It's available on the DOD website HERE. As many of you know, President Biden asked me to consider how and when we might add the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccines to the list of…

Arbitrator’s Ruling Mandates Vaccinations

An arbitrator on July 30 ruled in favor of the American Maritime Association’s (AMA) insistence that they can require all mariners sailing aboard the companies’ respective vessels be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. The SIU challenged the AMA’s mandate by demanding expedited arbitration, primarily because they unilaterally imposed it rather than bargain over its effects with…

Vaccines Available at New Orleans Airport

Please see the flyer posted below (PDF version available HERE) for information on COVID-19 vaccination availability at Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport daily between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.

St. Louis Hall Closed

The hiring hall in St. Louis is closed today (Friday, July 16) for precautionary reasons, but is scheduled to reopen Monday morning. The hall is still reachable by phone. ###

Restoration of REC Counter Service Appointments

From the U.S. Coast Guard's National Maritime Center: The National Maritime Center (NMC) will resume counter service appointments for the Regional Examination Centers (RECs) listed below, beginning Monday, July 19, 2021.  Limited examination services will continue.  Mariners seeking to schedule counter service or examination appointments may do so by contacting the appropriate e-mail address or…

Union Wins Major Arbitration Award

The SIU in late June won an arbitration decision that is expected to result in thousands of dollars’ worth of overtime being paid to eligible Seafarers employed by Crowley Maritime and its subsidiaries. New York-based arbitrator Jay Nadelbach on June 25 sided with the union in its efforts to secure compensation for mariners who were…

Update on Piney Point Protocols

Fully vaccinated individuals (students and staff alike) now have the option to go mask-free at the Paul Hall Center for Maritime Training and Education, located in Piney Point, Maryland. The union-affiliated school also recently updated its rules to allow for fully vaccinated students to come and go from the campus during their respective stays. In…

Reminder About MMC Renewals

According to the latest pandemic-era guidance on merchant mariner credentials (MMC) from the U.S. Coast Guard, those documents “may only be extended for up to one year from their date of expiration. Merchant Mariner Credentials (MMC) (National Endorsements only) that expire between March 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021 are extended until the EARLIER of…

USCG: Masks No Longer Required Outdoors on Vessels

The U.S. Coast Guard recently posted the following news item, which is available on the agency's Maritime Commons blog HERE. The first link below goes to a three-page Marine Safety Information Bulletin on the same subject. Update to mask requirement for persons aboard vessels On June 10, 2021, CDC announced that, until it can amend…

Wilmington Hall Update (July 13, 2020) (message HERE)

Message from Maritime Union Presidents (July 10, 2020) (message HERE)

Delay in Reopening of Houston Hall (July 9, 2020) (message HERE)

Regional Examination Center Closure Update (July 8, 2020) (message HERE)

Hiring Hall Updates and Reminders (July 8, 2020) (message HERE)

Wilmington Hall Closing (July 2, 2020) (message HERE)

Jersey Hall Reopening July 6 (message HERE)

Maersk Idaho Update (June 26, 2020) (message HERE)

Houston Hall Closing (June 26, 2020) (message HERE)

Important Message to Seafarers Concerning SIU Election (June 24, 2020) (message HERE)

Message to Seafarers Concerning Recent COVID-19 Cases, Ongoing Need for Vigilance (June 23, 2020) (message HERE)

Jersey City Hall Closing (June 22, 2020) (message HERE)

July Meetings Cancelled (message HERE)

Paul Hall Center Reopens August 1 (message HERE) (PHC Health Questionnaire/Acknowledgement form HERE)

COVID-19 Pre-Entry Questionnaire Posted (message HERE, direct link to questionnaire HERE)

Hiring Halls to Reopen June 15 (June 4, 2020) (message HERE)

USCG: Extension of MMC Endorsements, Certificates (June 4, 2020) (message HERE)

Unions Call for Immediate Assistance with Overseas Crew Changes (May 28, 2020) (message HERE)

Updates on Crew Changes, June Meetings and More (May 27, 2020) (message HERE)

USNS Grumman News Plus Other Updates (May 14, 2020) (message HERE)

SHBP Brief (May 5, 2020) (message HERE)

Message to Seafarers Concerning Larger-Scale Resumption of Crew Changes (April 30, 2020) (message HERE)

NMC: Renewal Exams by Email (April 23, 2020)

SIU Election Message to All Members (April 17) (message HERE)

Message to Seafarers Concerning Upcoming Crew Changes (April 16, 2020) (message HERE)

TWIC Expiration Dates Extended (April 16, 2020) (article HERE)

State Department Passport Notice (April 14, 2020)

Seafarers 401(K) Plan adopts changes to help participants (article HERE)

The SIU’s May membership meetings have been cancelled (brief announcement HERE)

USCG: COVID-19 TWIC Operations

For an update from Seafarers Health and Benefits Plan (April 2), click HERE

USCG: Essential Maritime Workers

USCG: COVID-19 Drug Testing Compliance

National Maritime Center Update (March 30, 2020)

Important Mariner Credentials Update (March 30, 2020)

American Steamship Company’s restriction-to-ship communication is located HERE.

A message from SIU President Michael Sacco to Seafarers is available HERE

A detailed update (originally posted March 20) from the SIU is located HERE.

For the latest guidance and news from the U.S. Coast Guard, click here.