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Should cruise ships offer mental health first aid to employees?

On Behalf of | Aug 16, 2022 | Seaman Status

There were approximately 178,000 active cruise ship employees working from New York and around the country in 2019. Traveling to exotic locations and being a part of what seems like a constant vacation can make working on a cruise ship seem like a dream job. However, cruise ship employment comes with its own set of challenges, and many mental health professionals are now calling for a different kind of first aid to be available on board.

Cruise ship crew and captains experience various emotional struggles while working at sea. Because employees are restricted to the ship, their emotional struggles can be exacerbated. Having mental health resources available could help to diffuse intense feelings that could cause serious trauma.

Common emotional issues

Feelings of isolation are a natural occurrence among crew members. This is especially true of crew who have been working for long stretches of time. The inability to see or talk with family or leave the ship can cause feelings of being trapped and alone.

Dealing with bullies

Cruise ship employees who have worked in the industry for a long time can be a bit antagonistic to new hires. Dealing with a bully while confined to a ship can have a tremendous mental impact on a new employee.

Providing mental health intervention services could be an effective tool for cruise industry employees to help them deal with difficult or even crisis issues. Knowing that this resource is available could make employees feel safer and even encourage greater productivity by allowing workers to be more effective.

The addition of mental health intervention could encourage those who are on the fence about working for a cruise ship to feel better about applying. The greater reward for the cruise industry is a much more enjoyable cruising experience for their customers.