One hundred-and-thirty-five BVI Ports Authority (BVIPA) workers have been introduced to more than 16 hours of ‘intensive training’ in anti-money laundering and terrorist financing.
The BVIPA subjected its workers to this training in response to a National Risk Assessment Report that has been published.
During this training, port workers were given the skills to identify suspicious transactions, identify risk factors within the port, then map those factors to international guidelines as it relates to corrective action.
“The employees were also given the knowledge to prevent themselves from being victims of suspicious transactions. As you are aware, persons may target workers in these environments — for example, the port — to be part of networks or links. So personal protection is looked at,” said Osric Forrest, an occupation analyst with Prestige Logistics, the overseas consultancy firm hired to conduct the training.
One method used to train port workers to protect themselves involved outlining ‘risk factors’ associated with becoming part of these criminal organisations, Forrest said.
“We have actually identified the penalties which persons (port workers) are subject to. It speaks to loss of property. For example, if you have a dwelling which you may have used legitimate money to build say 50 percent of the house, and the other 50 percent is built by suspicious transactions, you stand the risk of losing the entire property. There is also the loss of job, there is also imprisonment. It depends on the nature of the crime. So all these were highlighted to individuals in terms of being able to make choices,” Forrest explained.
Occupational Safety and Health
Meanwhile, ports authority workers also underwent several hours of training in one other area known as OSHA — Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
That training programme covered topics such as identifying hazards, worksite analysis, the psychology of a workplace, job-safety analysis, risk causation, accident investigation, audits, and industrial hygiene.
“We actually covered these areas in what we call a 10-hour OSHA training programme in which participants receive a certificate of training and a wallet card indicating the time when they were trained. It is recommended that individuals or employees be trained or provided with refresher training every two years,” Forrest said.
He told BVI News that port workers have responded well to the training programme, which also gave them the opportunity to voice the challenges they experience in their line of work.
“The feedback has been overwhelming. They have stressed that top management needs to be part of this process also,” Forrest said, adding that his consultancy firm has drafted a number of recommendations for the BVIPA management.
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