Hotel union expects govt to shut down any employers mandatory vaccination policy

“No employers in this country, if the government does not mandate it to make it law can turn around and make it law, and I don’t see the government standing by and allowing it to happen.”

ewnews.com NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Bahamas Hotel Catering and Allied Workers Union (BHCAWU) President Darrin Woods said yesterday that if the government seeks to introduce a mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy in The Bahamas it ought to be prepared for a “faceoff” as he condemned restaurants and other private sector employers who have sought to introduce the practice.

“We stand behind the point that the government has said that vaccination is not mandatory,” Woods said.

“No employers in this country, if the government does not mandate it to make it law can turn around and make it law, and I don’t see the government standing by and allowing it to happen.”

He continued: “That is not law. The only law that the employees of anywhere here in The Bahamas have to follow are in the health and safety regulations, and that’s outlined in the Employment Act.”

Mayu Holdings Limited, the company operating as Sushi Rokkan, said all employees are required to get vaccinated no later than June 30, 2021.

Management noted that failure to comply with the mandatory vaccination policy may lead to “disciplinary action being taken, which could result in dismissal or at the very least re-assignment to another position — if such can be found — minimizing direct and proximate contact with the public”.

However, Director of Labour John Pinder said the policy was unlawful.

Woods stressed that the taking the COVID-19 vaccine is a personal choice, one that must be weighed with appropriate medical advice.

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He said the union supports employees receiving regular testing, but cautioned employers to follow the law.

This month, Italy made vaccinations mandatory for all health workers.

It was not alone.

Grenada announced mandatory vaccines for staff at facilities for quarantined travelers earlier this month.

Grenada Prime Minister Dr Keith Mitchell said with rapid increase in cases and deadlier variants of the virus, the government must take all measures to protect people, including the mandatory vaccination of all frontline and hospitality workers.

Woods was asked about the union’s position if the government made the vaccine mandatory.

“Well, if the government goes in that direction and I doubt it because we getting into a particular time of the year and the hospitality workers represent a big chunk — a very big chunk — right, I don’t see it happening, but if they do, I guess we’ll have to face off.

“And then the constitutionality of it comes into play.”

Source: https://ewnews.com

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