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Fear exists at Silversands

SilverSands Hotel – the luxury resort on Grand Anse beach owned by a controversial businessman from Egypt

A group of workers from Silversands resort has entered into discussions with a local attorney-at-law seeking legal advice on mandatory vaccination as required by management in order for them to remain on the job in the business owned by Egyptian business tycoon, Naguib Sawiris.

A well-placed source told THE NEW TODAY that the workers met Monday with U.S-trained barrister-at-law Jerry Edwin who is known to be opposed to mandatory vaccination against the deadly Covid-19 virus.

According to one of the affected workers, he was excluded from the shift that was assigned work at Silversands for the next two weeks as he did not take the vaccine.

He said the names of several employees who are in a similar situation have also been excluded from the shift.

He stated that the management of the hotel told the workers that if they did not take the vaccine by last Saturday, they would not be placed on a shift to work at the resort.

The affected worker said that “a bunch of us were left out (of the shift) because we didn’t take it (the vaccine).”

The new shift at Silversands started on Monday but the workers were given notification of the position of the resort 6 days in advance.

Grenada has been using the Indian-manufactured Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine in the fight against the virus, which was first detected on its shores just over a year ago.

THE NEW TODAY understands that in one department, seven of the 13-member staff were not assigned to a shift this week for failing to take the vaccine.

The worker said that there is fear among some staffers at the resort and that two employees who did not take the vaccine had a change of heart and decided to take “the jab” in order to keep their jobs.

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One of the employees reportedly took out a loan from a local commercial bank to purchase a car and decided to eventually take the vaccine in order to keep his job to be able to pay back on the loan.

“He’s scared so he is thinking of taking it today,” said an employee at the resort.

Another employee is reluctantly taking the vaccine as he is the sole breadwinner in the family and has a young baby.

“They (management) are scaring them guys,” said the employee who indicated that workers at Silversands are not unionised.

According to the worker, staffers at the resort view the response of management to those employees who do not take the vaccine as a “technical way” to get rid of workers.

He said that a Supervisor has indicated to them that anyone who did not take the vaccine within the next two weeks will not be fired but that their job position with the company will become redundant.

The owner of Silversands came in for a barrage of criticisms in Grenada within the past two weeks over his controversial statement that government should privatise the Maurice Bishop International Airport (MBIA) at Point Salines.

In the face of a massive public uproar, both Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell and Tourism & Civil Aviation Minister Dr. Clarice Modeste-Curwen were forced to come out and assure the nation that Sawiris was talking in his own personal capacity and privatisation of the island’s sole airport is not on the cards.