Activists call for protection of hundreds of Filipino crew members on virus-affected Grand Princess cruise ship

Four hundred and forty-four Filipino crew members and six passengers from the Grand Princess, the coronavirus-stricken cruise ship that was docked in Port of Oakland, have arrived safely in the Philippines on March 15th.

Prior to their disembarkation, Filipino American activists joined other maritime workers and their unions in advocating for their safe repatriation.

In a joint effort by the U.S. and Philippine governments, upon disembarkation, the Filipino crew members and passengers went through screenings by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

The process to get the Philippine nationals off the ship and onboard the plane was overseen by the Philippine consulate in San Francisco.

But activists said there should have been more transparency during the process and want to make sure the workers are taken care of.

“We hope that the Philippine government helps ensure that their rights are protected as seafarers that they get proper and fair, appropriate compensation according to the labor contracts that they signed.”

While the crew will be under a mandatory 14-day quarantine period at the athlete’s village in New Clark City in Capas, Tarlac — these activists want to call attention to the plight of the other Filipino mariners.

“Especially with more ships being expected to be infected and to dock in different ports across the world. We really implored the Philippine government to take this seriously and be ready to receive and support repatriating Filipino seafarers.”

Since it departed the Port of Oakland, the cruise ship moved to a remote dock in San Francisco, where it will temporarily stay for remaining crew members to complete a 14-day quarantine.

91 Filipino crew members volunteered to remain onboard the ship to comprise the minimum operational manning teams.

But these Fil-Am activists are concerned for their safety.

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  • Mario
    18 March 2020 at 9:27 pm - Reply

    400 Pinoy CRUISE SHIPS arrived via two 747 Boeing plane at US TAXPAYERS money, in the PH after finding NEGATIVE and 14 days quarantine in the US . This transaction was between US State Dept. and PH Embassy in Washington and PH Congen in San Francisco. NOTHING to do with the FILIPINO activist, that is why DUTERTE question the Franchise of ABS-CBN because Balitang Amerika favored again the Pinoy activist. No one can get closer to the crew and passengers even Embassy officials only papers works. 26 Pinoy and several passengers tested positive remained inside the CRUISE Ship. The ship was pulled over to a Naval port and remain as temporary hospitals. As part of TRUMP Hospital bed readiness, 2 US Naval 1000 beds Hospital ships,3-4 Cruise Ships available volunteered by the owners. US NatGuard already prepared 3,000+ FIELD Army Hospital tent together with FEMA in every State. US MIC thru DOD, will manufacture extra 500 Million face Mask and BIO suit for Doctors and Nurses. VA, designated CDC Hospitals in every State are ready. Drive-by FREE testing on Walmart, Cosco, Target Kohl etc. now activated. Soon self-swab testing are available.