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We are doing the decent thing with Little Dix Bay workers - Dr Pickering

- said Labour laws will be upheld while striking a balance in ensuring both locals & expats find work
Minister for Natural Resources and Labour Dr The Honourable Kedrick D. Pickering said that the closure of Rosewood Little Dix Bay and Biras Creek on the sister island of Virgin Gorda has created exceptional circumstances which necessitate a departure from the norm in preferring VIslanders and Belongers over non-Belongers. The Minister was on April 18, 2016 responding to questions from the Leader of the Opposition Honourable Julian Fraser RA (R3) during the Eighth Sitting of the First Session of the Third House of Assembly. Photo: VINO/File
Come May 1, 2016, the workers of Rosewood Little Dix Bay will be without jobs as the hotel and resort closes for 18 months to undergo rehabilitation and expansion. Photo: VINO/File
Come May 1, 2016, the workers of Rosewood Little Dix Bay will be without jobs as the hotel and resort closes for 18 months to undergo rehabilitation and expansion. Photo: VINO/File
In June 2015 Biras Creek Resort sent home some 70 employees. Photo: Provided
In June 2015 Biras Creek Resort sent home some 70 employees. Photo: Provided
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI - Minister for Natural Resources and Labour Dr The Honourable Kedrick D. Pickering (R7) said the closure of Rosewood Little Dix Bay and Biras Creek on the sister island of Virgin Gorda has created exceptional circumstances which necessitate a departure from the norm in preferring VIslanders and Belongers over non-Belongers.

According to the answers that the Minister provided, a delicate balance must be struck between the need to give priority to Belongers and the need to demonstrate basic human decency.

Come May 1, 2016, the workers of Rosewood Little Dix Bay will be without jobs as the hotel and resort closes for 18 months to undergo rehabilitation and expansion.

The Minister was on April 18, 2016 responding to questions from the Leader of the Opposition Honourable Julian Fraser RA (R3) during the Eighth Sitting of the First Session of the Third House of Assembly.

Hon Fraser asked, “Madam Speaker, with regards to the upcoming work stoppage at Little Dix Bay Resort in Virgin Gorda, would the Deputy Premier and Minister for Natural Resources and Labour please provide this Honourable House with the following lists: The number of employees that will be affected; and The number of those employees that are belongers and residents.”

In response, the Minister said, “Madam Speaker, the number of employees affected by the Little Dix Bay closure is three hundred and twenty one (326); and the number of employees that are Belongers and Residents is one hundred and sixty six (166).”

The Opposition Leader then asked the Minister whether new work permits will be issued to those disaffected Little Dix Bay Resort workers before Belongers and Residents are employed during the 18 months period.

In response, Dr Pickering said work permits will continue to be issued in accordance with section 117(1)(a) of the Labour Code 2010, which says that an employer shall seek to employ a Virgin Islander or Belonger in preference to a Non-Virgin Islander or Non-Belonger where such a Virgin Islander or Belonger is qualified.

“However, Madam Speaker, there are circumstances (closure of Little Dix Bay and recently that of Biras Creek) that require special attention from the human perspective as well as from the economic perspective,” said the Minister.

The Minister said that all of the persons affected by the Little Dix Bay closure are dealt with as a unit; “hence, we are ensuring that these individuals (BVIslanders and Non-Belongers) are assisted as best we can in securing alternative employment.”

According to the Minister, these situations are dealt with holistically as to do otherwise would not be in keeping with basic human decency.

“We will ensure that the labour laws are upheld, but there is a delicate balance that must reached as we also need to recognise the efforts of individuals who have lived among us for many years and have contributed to the Territory’s growth,” said the Minister.

8 Responses to “We are doing the decent thing with Little Dix Bay workers - Dr Pickering”

  • ccc (29/04/2016, 17:33) Like (7) Dislike (0) Reply
    Whatever doc
  • the question (29/04/2016, 18:51) Like (4) Dislike (7) Reply
    so why don't you deport David V Johnson and the rest responsible for this? The owner of Biras isn't even mentioned
    and most of the info on Rosewood is about the management also, and not it's owner who does call the shots.
    Whosoever owns the place is the one who ultimately decides, not some bum frontman. And yes Belongers come
    first!
  • Donald trump (29/04/2016, 21:26) Like (4) Dislike (0) Reply
    This joker minister is clueless on whats really going on with those people. The management is dogs in disguise.
    The slave mentality is very obvious. Labor is their puppy that they feed regular.
  • a word to the wise (29/04/2016, 22:50) Like (2) Dislike (3) Reply
    Regardless how great the plans are, and how patriotic the intentions are, the man on the street doesnt think about long term gains, so he will vote you out when his pocket is empty and you cannot implement your plans when you are opposition.
  • Not2Sure (29/04/2016, 22:58) Like (1) Dislike (1) Reply
    Yes, let us help all the island people we want to get jobs so they can vote NDP again but can we have for heaven's sake let us have some transparency with it too.
  • born here (30/04/2016, 01:18) Like (6) Dislike (1) Reply
    How are they doing the decent thing when the government own prospect reef hotel just hire a human resource manager from Nevis with out even advertising the job so locals could apply for it and now they even hire a guyanese man that government sent home because he reach retirement age once again without advertising the job. couldn't they get someone that use to work at littledix to full those positions



  • street reporter. (30/04/2016, 09:35) Like (6) Dislike (1) Reply
    I'm with Frazer on this one. The Once prosperous BVI is sinking and sinking fast.. What puzzle me is that no member of the government can speak out and speak up and willing to break ranks for the better of the country.. Its amazing..
  • Concerned (05/05/2016, 00:04) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    I know that bv islanders are definetly the ones that are being over looked.
    There is not much jobs on vg to cover 300 persons.
    Freeze new work permits for a while on certain jobs. See who can find jobs and try to get those positions fill before taking the freeze off.
    Gov shouldn't have to hassle with these things just put
    These things in place and you dont have to pay people to find work for the same people. Yccs is closing the end of May to dec. do u have to find work for those employees too? When bitter end in the next year or so closes as well for renovations for a while you have to do the same thing too?
    These employees were not thrown out empty handed. Emphasis on bv islanders / belongers should be given preference.
    We also have needy people in the bvi. How much attention is given to them? You have FSN begging the community for food etc to help these people. When are we going to do something about this. We are no better than the other countries who ignores their less fortunate. Lets face reality. Who are we building the bvi for? Lets wake up my people.


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