The object of a New Year,” wrote the English writer and philosopher G.K. Chesterton, “is not that we should have a new year. It is that we should have a new soul and a new nose; new feet, a new backbone, new ears, and new eyes. Unless a particular man made New Year resolutions, he would make no resolutions.

With that in mind, I have listed down some New Year resolutions which seem perfect for certain maritime individuals and organisations. Of course, they can be broken as quickly as they are made. But as the old saying goes, where there’s a will, there’s way.

For the International Maritime Organization (IMO):

Create more meaningful, unclichéd slogans

For ship owners and operators:

Start thinking of seafarers as persons, not as commodities.

For manning agents:

Be a more decent glorified clerk.

For maritime bureaucrats:

Learn to serve and be less officious.

For maritime charity workers:

Cut down on the selfies.

For seafarer unions:

Stop acting as though we were sacred cows.

For maritime school heads:

Take the time to read the full text of the STCW Convention and Code.

For maritime lawyers:

Don’t milk seafarers; take only what I deserve.

For maritime journalists:

Act as a real journalist, not as a publicist.

For Third World seafarers:

Stand up for my rights even as I do my duties.

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