Maritime Mental Health Report

Our Ref: HSR/1/9

Head Office Circular: NP/162/22

21st July 2022

To: The Secretary




Dear Colleague,




A Maritime Mental Health Forum took place on 16th June 2022.


In attendance were Dan Henderson (CalMac) and Geoff Kite (Regional Organiser) via video link, Dale Kember (NEC M1), Jonathan Havard (H&S Officer) and Darren Procter (National Secretary).

  • Good feedback was received regarding the latest newsletter, however these should be sent to each regional office which covers maritime members.
  • It was noted that Maritime Safety Week was 4th- 8th July inclusive
  • The next set of posters should focus on workplace issues and what the employer is doing – JH to work on (action: JH)
  • EAP Matrices need to be updated over the next two or three months – we need to know what is happening in each company (action: Regional Organisers)
  • DH stated that education is needed- by real life people telling their stories; DP will speak to some individuals about this for videos and a couple of written stories (from ex- P&O members in Dover, for example) (action: DP)
  • JH to ensure Portsmouth Branch copied in to Maritime information (action: JH)
  • GK asked what RMT’s position was on Mental Health First Aiders? DP noted that we have them in CalMac, RFA, IoMSPCo and PNTL. DH reported that Mental Health Fiirst Aiders could have quick introductory chats with colleagues, perhaps after lifeboat drills; 60 are trained at CalMac for a workforce of 1,700- many have left or stood down; there is a 35% retention rate. GK argued that we should be pushing companies to have Mental Health First Aiders
  • DH reported on the Mental Health in Maritime Network of 24th May. Discussions included the importance of nutrition and education about diet, hydration, alcohol, heart, fitness, being over or underweight and BMI to metal wellbeing. “How you look after your body has an impact on your mental wellbeing”
  • DP asked what our objections are to the Government’s nine-point plan; should we be seeking Mental Health First Aiders in the workplace for every vessel? Should references be to Health, Safety and Welfare?
  • It was agreed to pay to download MCA publications on Wellbeing at Sea and put on the RMT website. Hard copies of this and The MCA’s Wellbeing at Sea pocket Guide for Seafarers are said to be in the Southampton Officer- JH to speak with Mark Carden to arrange distribution to members (action: JH/ Mark Carden)
  • RMT Mental Health Seminars were proposed- GK suggested we ask the Education Centre about specifically maritime courses (action: JH) 
  • A Mental Health National Forum was suggested- currently this lies under the Human Element Advisory Group (HEAG)
  • DP noted that the ITF Welfare Fund could possibly be utilised for mental wellbeing courses
  • It was noted that World mental Health Day is 10th October- DP to send JH a list of all mental health days/ weeks (action: DP)

At its meeting on 19th July, your National Executive Committee noted the following report from its Health and Safety sub-committee:


We note the report on file.


Further, the updates will be contained in the next issue of the Maritime Mental health Newsletter.


Relevant members, branches and regional councils to be advised.

I am acting in accordance with these instructions; please bring the contents of this circular to the attention of relevant members. 


Yours sincerely



Michael Lynch

General Secretary