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Go above and beyond to hire BVIslanders, hotels told


“Make sure as you plan your reopening, your human resources department goes above and beyond the call of duty to hire BVIslanders and Belongers” — Vincent Wheatley

Businesses in the local tourism industry, particularly hotels and resorts, have been told to make provisions to populate their workforce with locals.

Those instructions were given by Labour Minister and Ninth District representative Vincent Wheatley.

Speaking at Tuesday’s sitting of the House of Assembly, Wheatley said: “I’ve already begun visiting properties and hotels damaged by the hurricanes of 2017 with a very simple message: Make sure as you plan your reopening, your human resources department goes above and beyond the call of duty to hire BVI Islanders and Belongers.”

The Labour Minister said government is prepared to assist as best as it can with the training needs in this regard.

In fact, Wheatley said he will be promoting a collaboration between the Labour Department and the local community college.

“I will be calling on the Labour Department in collaboration with the H Lavity Stoutt Community College to take the lead in organising these developmental training opportunities for interested persons,” he said.

“The territory will experience exponential growth in these areas over the next decade as we rebuild and it is our aim to prepare BVIslanders and Belongers to take advantage of these opportunities.”

He continued: “The devastating event of 2017 has highlighted a fact that we already knew and that is: the territory has a need for training and development in the technical areas, especially in the yachting sector.”

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18 Comments

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  1. Response says:

    “Go above and beyond to ensure that your people are adequately trained and proper programs are placed in the schools from very early on ensuring that they have the right attitudes and skill-set to carry out duties!” – Hotels to Government.

    For too long we have frowned upon hospitality jobs and gave our kids the impression that bartending, cooking, waitress etc. are menial expat jobs and now that the dynamics are changing with respect to financial services, people think they can just drop locals in positions and all will be well. Hospitality jobs require skill and experience in order to really start seeing/feeling the benefits. Put programs in place from the early high school level, beef up the programs being offered at the technical school levels. Partner with the businesses by offering secondments for the young people, sponsored initially by Government and give the businesses the choice on whether to keep them on. Let’s stop this demand BS and train our people up so they can take advantage of employment opportunities initially, with ownership of their own businesses to follow once they’ve garnered sufficient experience.

    Like 45
    Dislike 3
    • Stop says:

      A lot of people with no experience, skills and training in the hospitality field are “just dropped” in those jobs. Locals can do them just as well.

      Like 9
      Dislike 14
      • Shorty says:

        The primary issue is Do locals actually want tourism industry jobs?? The answer is NO!!! For years every successive government and individuals from high school have always pushed white collar jobs on students. Service industry jobs were never introduced or given priority as a viable career path. Many times hotels and other tourism related businesses put out job ads weeks and months in the paper with little to no LOCAL applications. We can preach at the top of our lungs all we want, all the opportunities are there for LOCALS to take up any job within our territory. The reality and question we should ask do they actually want it?? Not just show up for 1 week and quit.

        Like 19
  2. Yes. says:

    Thank you.

    Like 3
    Dislike 2
  3. Anonymous says:

    Hope those words are enforceable.

    Like 4
    Dislike 4
  4. Andrew says:

    Look to the island of Mauritius, from an early age the inhabitants learn the importance of tourism to the economy through education. Visitors recognise what a great place it is to visit | revisit.

    Like 10
  5. Awesome! says:

    Yes indeed! GET IT DONE!!!

    Like 3
    Dislike 1
  6. Ausar says:

    I can agree and disagree with your statements “Response”.

    I feel that while many of our people are interested in office jobs, there are a good bit who are willing to work in touristic settings.

    However,one does not need qualifications to become an expert in bartending, waiting, hostessing, and the other areas of work usually involved in this line of work.

    A willingness to learn, coupled with training within the middle and high school settings, should cement our students for such positions.

    Perhaps, if government had favoured the call by the previous Premier Smith on the Prospect Reef proposition, we could have made inroads in the industry long ago.

    Hindsight is always 20/20, but its not too late to get our people involved.

    Again, another great plan of inclusion for our people within this sector of tourism!

    Like 1
    Dislike 1
    • @ Ausar says:

      as a hotel manager I would say that your wrong with this statement”However,one does not need qualifications to become an expert in bartending, waiting, hostessing, and the other areas of work usually involved in this line of work.”you surely dont knowwhat your talking about

  7. Racist says:

    A racist policy of discrimination that is notaccepted and is illegal in most modern countries.
    How arrogant is BVI you have had sham office jobs for years on the back of money laundering for the worlds criminals and was satisfied to destroy the islands both its ecology and social history at the same time, BVI is filthy and dirty . The torisum industry in a shadow of what is should be and what there is, is only there because of a majority expat business people and workers . BVI ers only take an interest in torisum when it can scam a few dollars .
    Sorry BVI read the reviews of tourists who get to see many Caribbean islands most say why the hell did they take us there it’s a dump.
    All that will happen is Belongers will get priority to get jobs make a half assed effort and eventually the expats who shaped the industry will go and you will be left with nothing .
    Roll on the comments that will prove me right

    Like 4
    Dislike 5
  8. From here says:

    My humble opinion..Employer dont want to employ local because they still have the “I AM FROM HERE” so they coming to work late, want to go before the time, call sick every week.

  9. Hotelier says:

    If we want a world class tourism business we should employ the best person we can find for the job, regardless of ethnicity, faith, sex or citizenship. Any other policy results in a second class offering.

  10. Sly Mongoose says:

    I once visited Guadeloupe as a French student. We stayed at a mini hotel owned by the Government. There, students are trained and obtain experience in the hospitality industry. They work in the restaurant, reservation, management, room service and so on. And guests, like students and other people who travel for government reasons, stay there for a minimal fee knowing that it is students who are serving them. If Prospect Reef could be refurbished (pending funds availability, of course) then young people on BVI can learn the business inside and out there. Courses can be offered, experience obtained and a workforce cultivated. In the words of Lashing Dog, “I’m only supposing”.

  11. hmm says:

    It’s time we change the perception and perhaps hotels/resorts have a big part to play in changing in. Start by promoting why its so great to work at Scrub or Peter. How well you treat your staff and how well you pay, incentives for career growth, etc.

    I do also think Education Department has a roll to play as well. Hospitality training needs to step up a big notch. Far to long customer service skills is an issue. Better discipline practices .. I find when the students reach high school they just out of control …

    Parents need to wake up as well pretty majorly and stop training their children to believe they can get favor jobs on “I born here” mentality .. No one can’t afford to babysit a lazy child all day who really doesn’t care to work but wants the money.

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