Norwegian Cruise Line has announced that it is the first major cruise line to be certified in and in compliance with the requirements of the International Labor Organization’s Maritime Labor Convention (MLC) 2006 that provides comprehensive rights and protection at work for the world's more than 1.2 million seafarers, including Norwegian’s more than 17,000 crew members working onboard its 11 international vessels.

“We value our hard working crew and consider them our most important and greatest asset,” said Kevin Sheehan, Norwegian’s president and CEO. “We employ more than 17,000 Seafarers from almost 100 different countries around the globe; respecting each individual for the unique talents they bring into our organization. We offer a career path to reach the highest levels in our shipboard organization to each person without distinction. Being the first major cruise line to successfully implement the new labor standards demonstrates that Norwegian also leads the industry when it comes to taking care of its crew members.”

The convention sets out seafarers' rights to decent conditions of work on a wide range of subjects, and aims to be globally applicable and uniformly enforced. It has been designed to become a global instrument known as the "fourth pillar" of the international regulatory regime for shipping, complementing the key Conventions of the International Maritime Organization (IMO). It consolidates and updates more than 68 international labor standards related to the Maritime sector adopted over the last 80 years.

Lloyd's Register inspected and audited Norwegian’s international fleet for compliance and assisted with their preliminary preparations through a formal gap analysis, review of the Declaration of Labor Compliance and subsequently carrying out vessel certification inspections.

In order to celebrate this event, Norwegian has donated $10,000 USD to the Virlanie Foundation in Manila, the Philippines. The Virlanie Foundation is dedicated to rescuing street children in Manila, by providing shelter, food, education, and most importantly, a home. The organization relies on donations from around the world and currently operates 12 homes and outreach programs in the Philippines.

“One of the most important aspects of the Maritime Labor Convention is the Seafarer’s social welfare,” added Sheehan. “As a socially responsible company, we give back to the community. A majority of our shipboard employees hail from the Philippines, so we are proud to continue to support the important work that the Virlanie Foundation does on an ongoing basis.”