Union: Hotel workers can opt for severance packages

Union: Hotel workers can opt for severance packages
Bahamas Hotel Catering & Allied Workers Union (BHCAWU) president Darrin Woods

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Bahamas Hotel Catering & Allied Workers Union (BHCAWU) president Darrin Woods said yesterday that hotel workers can seek to be made redundant and receive their severance packages.

Woods told Eyewitness News the current industrial agreement provides the option for any worker that has been furloughed for more than 10 consecutive weeks.

He said: “Our industrial agreement provides for anyone who has been laid off for more than 10 consecutive weeks, if they want to they can ask to be made redundant and they would pay them the severance pay. It is in the agreement so if they want to approach the employer they can and we will ensure that whatever they are due they get.”

Woods noted that with many hotel properties now pushing back their reopening dates indefinitely, it was understandable that some with the hotel sector are feeling uneasy.

“There is a sense of uncertainty in the industry right now so one could imagine what people are thinking,” said Woods.

The Atlantis Paradise Island Resort and the British Colonial Hilton, whose workers fall under the BHCAWU, have expressed uncertainty in recent weeks regarding reopening.

British Colonial Hilton recently advised staff members that it will extend its temporary suspension of operations until further notice, citing the ongoing COVID-19 crisis in the country.

Atlantis said two weeks ago that it continues to evaluate its reopening timeline and will announce a specific date soon.