Human Rights at Sea: Maritime Union, Nautilus International Supports the Discussion


increased protection of human rights at sea.

As a consequence and over three years our NGO brought together leading experts, global academics and four international maritime law firms to unite existing international law into one document. As a result, the Geneva Declaration on Human Rights at Sea (GDHRAS) was born.

Backed by extensive data gathering with over 1000 pages of evidence and footnoted links, the justification of core need was clear in the drafting the document and later launched in Geneva, Switzerland, on 1 March 2022.

Importantly, the GDHRAS, which was supplied to all Wilton Park conference attendees, recognises that the maritime environment can present unique challenges to protecting human rights and seeks to address these challenges through a set of guiding principles and best practices.

Taking Action

Human Rights at Sea is pleased that Nautilus International is concurrently highlighting our NGO’s long-held position around the need for better protections for all persons at sea to be enforced alongside the likes of the Maritime Labour Convention and the ILO 188 Working in Fishing Convention.

By adopting and developing the GDHRAS, states and non-state actors can help to ensure that all persons at sea are treated with dignity and respect, including protecting them from abuse, exploitation, and discrimination and ensuring they have access to basic necessities such as food, water and medical care.

Available to Download

The GDHRAS is freely available to download in 13 languages, and it is ready now for use to better protect the estimated 30 million people who work, live and move across our world’s oceans and seas.

Looking forward, we will utilise our UN special consultative status to advocate for the global adoption of the Geneva Declaration on Human Rights at Sea to fill the much-needed gap highlighted by the 2021 House of Lords Inquiry.

Human Rights at Sea and partner organisations are ready to better protect all persons at sea.