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Beaches Workers Stretched Thin

Many Beaches Turks and Caicos Resort employees are complaining that due to the departure of hundreds of colleagues, they have been stretched to the limit, working protracted overtime periods to cover for those departed workers.

Photo: Beaches Turks & Caicos Facebook

A great deal of the company’s employees told NewslineTCI that due to the prolonged closure of the country’s largest resort, hundreds of workers decided either to leave the country or landed employed at different properties within the country, among them the soon-to-be-open Ritz Carlton Resort in Grace Bay.

The resulting staff gap has left many remaining employees complaining after being asked to work long overtime hours, which they say have been taking a toll on their health.

One worker told NewslineTCI that they witnessed persons tending to guests and appeared half asleep. It is understood that while every department has been affected, the kitchen has been the hardest hit.

“A number of chefs have left, and not only that, waiters, bartenders and other persons have left too,” an employee revealed.

Another employee told NewslineTCI that on a trip to the Turks and Caicos Islands, Sandals’ Chief Operations Officer, Shawn DaCosta announced a five percent increase across the board.

However, many staff members claimed that such compensation was way too meagre and super disproportionate to the level of sacrifice they had to make in order to keep the guests happy. Some are of the opinion that the raise should have been more meaningful.

“Five percent increase to someone who is not making much to begin with is like nothing. I think we should be given a bit more,” the employee remarked.

NewslineTCI learnt that 40 Sandals/Beaches workers were bussed in from neighbouring Jamaica a few days ago, to fill what they are describing as a huge shortfall. However, those workers will only be in the Turks and Caicos Islands for three months.

After their departure, it is expected that 70 Sandals/Beaches Employees will arrive from St. Lucia. It is unclear how long the latter bunch will be working in the TCI.

In the meantime, it is understood that the Beaches management is working to stave off a strike by disgruntled front desk employees, who are demanding a further hike in salary.

“Some of them are saying that they deserve much more than a five percent increase, because they are putting in too much work for such a small compensation,” an employee said.

Many hotel workers with whom NewslineTCI spoke, have lauded the idea of the Ritz Carlton coming to the TCI. They claim that even if they were not willing or ready to leave their current places of employment to seek job opportunities at the country’s first 12-story mega-five-star property, they were happy that there is substantial competition, which they believe would provide rivalry in every area, including the salary department.

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