The U.S. Maritime Coalition has announced that this year’s Congressional “Sail-In” will take place on Capitol Hill on May 4, 2011. The Sail-In will look to build on the success of last year’s inaugural event which was widely supported by the American maritime industry including international and domestic ocean carriers, terminal operators and labor unions.
“We had folks from 20 states, 48 congressional districts, 28 companies, 9 unions and labor organizations, and 10 related associations,” reported VADM Albert J. Herberger, a former U.S. Maritime Administrator and head of the volunteer organizing group. “That’s a powerful message to Congress,” he added.
The purpose of the Sail-In is to increase Congressional awareness of the importance of America’s maritime industry to the economic and national security of the United States, and to generate support for the programs and policies important to the survival and growth of the United States-flag merchant marine and to the jobs of American merchant mariners and America’s maritime workforce.
This year’s Sail-In is even more important considering the dramatic changes in the make-up of the 112th Congress. The traditional congressional supporters of the industry need to be supported and embraced while also introducing the broad benefits of domestic and international maritime transportation to the many new Members. Hundreds of hard-working individuals from across the country and from all segments of the American maritime industry will come to Washington to participate. Teams comprised of individuals representing a cross-section of the industry will meet with Members of Congress throughout the day. The meetings will entail informing Congressional leaders of the American maritime industry’s importance to the economic and national security of the United States, of the important role the industry plays in supporting American troops and America’s defense mission overseas, and of the thousands of American jobs created and maintained throughout the industry.
Anyone who is interested is encouraged to visit http://www.maritimeindustrysailin.com in order to get information and register (at no cost) for the event.