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Sexual abuse in the MN

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  • Sexual abuse in the MN

    Probably something I shouldn't be worrying too much about, but I have seen a lot of references to it online and from hearsay, mostly along the lines of senior officers abusing their junior officers, or staff working aboard ships. Most of what I've heard comes from cruise ships. Also, what about the "lawlessness" that comes with some ships? I have read that many of these cases are unable to be taken to court or criminals prosecuted due to complicated issues with ports of registration for some ships...

    Is it really anything to worry about?

  • #2
    In short, not really.

    When it comes to hiring crew, we hire them for the professionalism and part of that is not sexually abusing or abuse of any major kind whilst on board. Just to make it clear, I'm talking about prolonged abuse, not a bollocking for when you've screwed up or made mistakes. I'll be totally honest, in the 5 years or so i've been in the industry I have only seen a case of abuse once and that was physical abuse (cadet was getting slapped around by the C/O daily) and as soon as we found out about it we came down on them like a ton of bricks. It reached the stage where all but one of the deck officers were sacked and the flag state who issued their licenses contacted to have their licenses revoked/suspended (in effect, having their livlihoods taken away from them).

    If it does happen, and I can be pretty sure it won't, then the first thing you do is report it to the Master on board. If they are involved, then simply contact your training officer, ask to be removed from the vessel and once back ashore explain why. If you can't contact your training officer, then wait until the next port, go into the radio room when the bridge is empty and contact your sponsor's "whistleblower" hotline (if they have one, we do). That will immediatly trigger a response and will usually result in a company representative getting on board either at that port or the next. They will usually make up some excuse or another for the crew but will keep your identity completely secret (we take that seriously!). They will speak to you in private at some point (normally under some pretense, "show me around" etc) but they will listen fairly and they will do something about it and they will fully investigate whats gone on and deal with them appropriately.

    However, like I said, if you're getting a bit shouted at for ****ing up then you are not being abused, but if you have been assaulted and/or routinely physically or sexually abused then CALL. Just because you're a cadet does not mean anyone has the right to treat you in that manner and they will be dealt with severely (the idiots I mentioned above lost their licenses for 5 years, Flag Admin were NOT impressed).
    I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.....

    All posts here represent my own opinion and not that of my employer.

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    • #3
      Sounds reassuring. Thanks Guinness

      Comment


      • #4
        I think it is far more likely that you will come across someone who does not like you, or gives you a hard time for whatever reason than you are likely to experience sexual abuse. To take it to an extreme you may even get some form of abuse, by that I mean mental and physical as opposed to sexual. That is not to say it is any less important.

        Things are far more moderated these days and companies are far stricter than they were. You will always find that those companies which have a great approach to this will always have a "Confidential Reporting" (Whistleblowing) policy as Guinessman says.

        The only time I was at sea that there was ever sexual content in discussions was a Bosun who was a big comedic Scouser who, if you made a mistake as a first year Midshipman, would say "That's alright, I will forgive you if you come to my cabin at 6pm and back in through the door with your underpants neatly folded over your left arm!". I always THOUGHT he was joking!

        The only other time was when a gay steward asked me why I never put my underwear out for him to wash when he did all my other laundry and he was only doing for me because he thought I was a "nice" Officer....... 'shudders'
        "Any damn fool can navigate the world sober. It takes a really good sailor to do it drunk." - Sir Francis Chichester.
        "Waves are not measured in feet or inches, they are measured in increments of fear." - Buzzy Trent

        "Careers at Sea" Ambassador - Experience of General Cargo, Combo ships, Tanker, Product Carrier, Gas Carrier, Ro-Ro, Reefer Container, Anchor Handlers.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Hatchorder View Post
          I think it is far more likely that you will come across someone who does not like you, or gives you a hard time for whatever reason than you are likely to experience sexual abuse. To take it to an extreme you may even get some form of abuse, by that I mean mental and physical as opposed to sexual. That is not to say it is any less important.

          Things are far more moderated these days and companies are far stricter than they were. You will always find that those companies which have a great approach to this will always have a "Confidential Reporting" (Whistleblowing) policy as Guinessman says.

          The only time I was at sea that there was ever sexual content in discussions was a Bosun who was a big comedic Scouser who, if you made a mistake as a first year Midshipman, would say "That's alright, I will forgive you if you come to my cabin at 6pm and back in through the door with your underpants neatly folded over your left arm!". I always THOUGHT he was joking!

          The only other time was when a gay steward asked me why I never put my underwear out for him to wash when he did all my other laundry and he was only doing for me because he thought I was a "nice" Officer....... 'shudders'
          Aye, we really do stamp on it as it just isn't acceptable. To the howls of the schizo over at the Deck Officer website and Ducki, the days of "Rum, Sodomy and the lash" are gone.

          However if you wish to have to do the horizontal tango with someone whilst on board (consensually), then I really don't want to know about and for the love of god, do not come and ask me for advice on how to end it with them!
          I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.....

          All posts here represent my own opinion and not that of my employer.

          Comment


          • #6
            Heeeyy, I'm just in it for the rum, anything else is a bonus...
            "Crazy like wild wolves threatened by fire, send them all to the bottom of the sea."

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            • #7
              And dont flush the used condoms down the toilet as they will most likely get stuck in the sewage filter and some muggins cadet like myself will have to clean it out .
              Maybe I will never be
              All the things that I want to be
              But now is not the time to cry
              Now's the time to find out why

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Beef1992 View Post
                And dont flush the used condoms down the toilet as they will most likely get stuck in the sewage filter and some muggins cadet like myself will have to clean it out .
                Psst, ask Chiefy what he's found in the filters before....
                I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.....

                All posts here represent my own opinion and not that of my employer.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Ducki52 View Post
                  Heeeyy, I'm just in it for the rum, anything else is a bonus...
                  Course you are petal...
                  I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.....

                  All posts here represent my own opinion and not that of my employer.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by GuinnessMan View Post
                    However if you wish to have to do the horizontal tango with someone whilst on board (consensually), then I really don't want to know about and for the love of god, do not come and ask me for advice on how to end it with them!
                    Nearly spat my tea out at that!

                    I hear that it is very very difficult to end it with a Scouse Bosun!
                    "Any damn fool can navigate the world sober. It takes a really good sailor to do it drunk." - Sir Francis Chichester.
                    "Waves are not measured in feet or inches, they are measured in increments of fear." - Buzzy Trent

                    "Careers at Sea" Ambassador - Experience of General Cargo, Combo ships, Tanker, Product Carrier, Gas Carrier, Ro-Ro, Reefer Container, Anchor Handlers.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by GuinnessMan View Post
                      the days of "Rum, Sodomy and the lash" are gone.
                      Yeah, dry ships and a ban on corporal punishment have seen to that!
                      Go out, do stuff

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        In no particular order......
                        Tee shirts, smartie tubes, mars bar wrappers, green scouring pads, assorted feminine hygiene products, condoms, dog ends, sweet corn.

                        As for sexual abuse, never seen it, abuse in general heard of it never really seen it, depends how thick skin you are up to a point, there is of course a border line between witty banter and abuse / bullying, my first reaction to reading the start of this thread was....wow does it happen, but i guess it must and does, but not so often as to be a big issue.

                        You be reet :-)
                        Trust me I'm a Chief.

                        Views expressed by me are mine and mine alone.
                        Yes I work for the big blue canoe company.
                        No I do not report things from here to them as they are quite able to come and read this stuff for themselves.


                        Twitter:- @DeeChief

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by GuinnessMan View Post
                          Psst, ask Chiefy what he's found in the filters before....

                          ...think I'll pass.

                          Oh, crap

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Bandicoot View Post
                            Oh, crap
                            Yep, I think they find that too...
                            "Crazy like wild wolves threatened by fire, send them all to the bottom of the sea."

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Chiefy View Post
                              In no particular order......
                              Tee shirts, smartie tubes, mars bar wrappers, green scouring pads, assorted feminine hygiene products, condoms, dog ends, sweet corn.
                              The best has to be the whole bath towels and the ping pong balls (although technically they got stuck in one of the many bends and didn't make it to the E/R).
                              ?Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn?t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.?

                              ? Mark Twain
                              myBlog | @alistairuk | flickr | youtube Views and opinions expressed are those of myself and not representative of any employer or other associated party.

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