Categorized | National News

Sandals Responds To Strike Vote

Sandals executives say they remain “astonished” by what they said are the Bahamas Hotel and Maintenance Workers Union’s (BHMAWU) “ongoing efforts to destabilise the resort’s 720-strong workforce and undermine the resort’s efforts to drive tourism to The Bahamas.”

On Thursday, 187 unionised workers voted to strike against the Cable Beach resort claiming that executives refused to meet with the union officials for three years.

In a statement sent Sunday, Sandals said as in the case in all the islands in which they operate, Sandals strives for the best for its team members and have “always been more than happy for them to engage in fair and legal union activities.”

“On Thursday, every single union member was free to leave the resort, without repercussions of any kind, and visit the polling station which was conveniently located just over a mile away in the shuttle buses provided,” Sandals officials said.

“However, despite the hyped-up union rhetoric claiming victory and their attempts to paint a false picture of a disgruntled and downtrodden workforce, we would like to reiterate that those 187 voting to strike represent just 25 per cent of the workforce with the vast majority happy to remain at a workplace they themselves have proudly pushed to the pinnacle of the global tourism industry.”

The resort acknowledged however, that a vote strike from 187 workers is too many.

“However at Sandals, we do not shy away from our responsibilities and we recognise that the 187 team members who felt compelled to vote for a strike is 187 too many. We will work hard to ensure that we offer those team members along with the workforce as a whole a comfortable and inspiring place to come to work each day,” the resort said.

Sandals said it also takes great exception to the union’s claim that the resort terminated three pregnant women, who were among a mass group that were made redundant in 2008.

“The fact is, and what the union fails to state, is that rather than being targeted by the resort, no one at the resort was aware that they were indeed pregnant. As soon as the resort was made aware, we immediately offered to reinstate them to their original positions. One of whom declined the offer, two returned to work soon after and remain employed at the resort to this day. In fact, one of whom was recently recognised for exceptional service,” officials said.

“We believe that every corporation operating in The Bahamas, Bahamians or otherwise, should not only abide fully by the laws of the land but that they should play a part in lifting the country and its people. At Sandals Royal Bahamian, through continuous investment in our people, resorts and the marketing that drives people to these shores we do just that. We humbly invite the people of The Bahamas, to look at the facts and decide for themselves.”

Written by Jones Bahamas

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