Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


New book tells graphic story of abuse and modern slavery

New book tells graphic story of abuse and modern slavery on boats fishing for New Zealand quota




The Catch, a book to be released in August by Awa Press, presents a powerful indictment of conditions endured by crew on foreign charter vessels fishing in New Zealand waters – and examines the destructive practices threatening many of the world’s fisheries.


The author, Michael Field, a senior journalist for The Sunday Star-Times and a Radio New Zealand Pacific affairs correspondent, first became interested in the fishing industry in 2008 when a Taiwanese boat, Tai Ching 21, was found near Kiribati with no one on board and lifeboat and life-rafts missing. None of its 29 men – Chinese, Indonesian and Filipino crew and Taiwanese officers – has ever been found.


Field’s search for the men’s identities led him into a dark world of foreign-flagged vessels fishing as far south as ice-bound Antarctica. In The Catch he reveals what he discovered: horrifying examples of modern slavery in which men from poor countries are trapped on filthy, unsafe ships, treated brutally by captains and officers, and receive little or no pay; and fishing practices that are wasteful, environmentally damaging, and often illegal.


Since the introduction of the quota management system in 1986, some of New Zealand’s largest fishing companies have increasingly used foreign charter vessels to fish for their quota. Field claims irresponsible fishing practices of such vessels are not only endangering crews but stripping the world’s seas and threatening the food supply of people everywhere, propelling us towards one of the environmental tragedies of our times.


Field’s revelations have been backed by independent studies from researchers at the University of Auckland Business School, and by foreign journalists and organisations. The publicity has led to a 2013 ministerial inquiry and a bill, currently before Parliament, that would require fishing vessels to be flagged to New Zealand. But, Field asks, is this enough to stop the horror?

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Mt Albert Aftermath

Personality politics – Jacinda is great! Jacinda is not so great! – have dominated the coverage of the Labour Party’s fortunes this week...

Still, this is a relatively new and welcome problem for the centre-left. Labour has seemed so bereft of crossover talent for so long that it seems almost embarrassed by this latest development. More>>

 

State Sector: Government To Apply Pay Equity Principles

Legal changes are not yet in effect but the State Services Commission, on behalf of the government, and the Council of Trade Unions on behalf of unions, have agreed to apply the principles to current pay equity claims. More>>

ALSO:

Throwing Stoners: English Blames Failed Drug Tests For Unemployment

Bill English’s diversionary tactic of condemning of a generation of Kiwi workers as a bunch of drug-takers cannot hide his government’s failure to create opportunities for decent work, says Labour’s Employment spokesperson Grant Robertson. More>>

ALSO:

Conservation: Central Govt Takes Over 1080 Regulation

“This new approach standardises the rules for using such poisons rather than the current system of different rules in different regions. This change will reduce costs and delays for operators, ensure consistent conditions throughout the country, reduce mistakes from misunderstanding rule differences and allow best practice approaches to be used." More>>

ALSO:

Election Entertainments: ACT Has Prison Plan, Greens Have Water Bill

Green Party launches Member’s Bill to protect our freshwater The Green Party has today launched a member’s bill that will keep water from underground sources, called aquifers, safe from pollution and contamination. More>>

ALSO:

2040 Target And Lower Standards: “Swimmable” Rivers Five Times More Likely To Make You Sick

Forest & Bird has condemned the government’s new water quality standards, warning New Zealanders that they lock in current levels of water pollution and allow for a 5-fold increase in the chance of getting sick from swimming in a river. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news