Tuesday 2nd July, 2019-A labour union representative has weighed in on the high levels of absenteeism among employees in the hotel industry on public holidays.
The issue formed the basis for discussions last month when hoteliers and the Antigua and Hotels and Tourist Association met with Labour Minister the Hon. Steadroy Benjamin.
It was noted that the minister’s attention was drawn to the Whit Monday holiday, where there was a shortage in the workforce because several employees did not report for duty. This reportedly had serious repercussions on the ability of several properties to adequately meet the needs of their guests. It has led to calls for a clear policy to be devised concerning work on public holidays, since it is the belief of some employees that they are entitled to refuse to work on a public holiday if they so desire.
But Antigua Trades and Labour Union’s Industrial Relations Officer Ralph Potter, believes there is a deeper reason why employees are not showing up and is suggesting the problem possibly lies at their places of employment.
Further discussions on the matter will take place on July 8th at the Verandah Resort and Spa, between Unions, the Antigua and Barbuda Employers Federation, the Antigua and Barbuda Chamber of Commerce, Hotel Association and other interested parties from civil society.