No More P&Os - Week of Action

Circular No: NP/027/23




Our ref: S1/1


3rd February 2023


Dear Colleagues


P&O Ferries One Year On – “No More P&Os” Week of Action


The first anniversary of P&O Ferries unlawful and brutal attack on nearly 600 Ratings’ jobs covered by the RMT collective bargaining agreement is on Friday 17th March. Your union is planning a week of events to mark P&O and DP World’s disgraceful actions and to continue the fight to get justice for our members.


A survey will be circulated to all ex-P&O Ratings subjected to this attack on their jobs and trade union rights. The statements and findings from the survey will be front and centre of the week of action and the ongoing campaign to recover jobs and trade union rights for seafarers. The survey will be sent out shortly.


I strongly urge members in Shipping Branches and their Regional Councils to actively participate in and to start organising for the following RMT actions and events:


  • Tuesday 14th March – Demonstration outside Parliament followed by a rally in Parliament on “No More P&Os” to reflect the objectives of the unions’ Fair Ferries campaign including mandatory collectively bargained terms and conditions on pay, rostering, crewing levels, pensions and training to be imposed in the ferry and wider shipping industry. Further details will be circulated shortly.


  • Friday 17th March – Shipping Branches and Regional Councils to organise demonstrations in Dover, Hull, Cairnryan and Larne. Head Office will supply banners, leaflets and other materials on request.


  • Tuesday 21st March – Demonstration at DP World head office in London to prevent P&O Ferries from using new green ships to ‘greenwash’ their reputation. Dubai is hosting COP28 in November and we will seek to cause maximum embarrassment and leverage through this action. Details to follow.


In March, P&O Ferries is expected to take delivery of the first of its two new green ferries for the Dover-Calais route. These vessels will replace the Pride of Canterbury and the Pride of Kent and were ordered from the Guangzhou shipyard in China in September 2019. P&O and DP World must not benefit from any ‘green washing’ of their unlawful attacks on Ratings’ jobs and conditions. 


We are in contact with ITF affiliates regarding the arrival of the Pioneer in Dover or Calais and will be on high alert to take action when it arrives in the Channel Straits, crewed with agency Ratings on exploitative contracts with IFM of Malta. I will keep you updated on this.


I will also update members shortly on the Seafarers’ Wages Bill, the Seafarer Welfare Charter and the Tories’ ineffective Nine Point Plan.


I would be grateful if you could bring the content of this circular to the attention of all Shipping Branch members. You will be kept advised of all further developments.


Yours sincerely


Mick Lynch

General Secretary