The Silversands resort has apparently put on hold its threat to sack workers from April 1 if they did not take the government-administered Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine in the fight against the deadly coronavirus.
A worker told THE NEW TODAY that employees who did not take the vaccine by the March 31 deadline reported to work since then and nothing was said to them on the issue.
He felt that the expose done in the last e-paper of THE NEW TODAY which showed that Silversands was not speaking the truth on the vaccination issue might have forced their hand.
Three weeks ago, an official of the Human Resource Department of the resort denied that workers were told that the vaccine had to be taken in order to continue working there.
However, a WhatsApp message surfaced from the Director of Engineering, Englishman Duncan Stephenson informing his 13-member staff that vaccination was mandatory to remain on the job.
Stephenson told staffers that he would delay in making up the shift for work on the following week as he needed to see the Vaccination Card of workers who complied as that would qualify them for employment at the resort and those who did not will have their employment terminated.
According to the worker, the Director of HR had also told the workers in oral communication that they will have to take the vaccine to be assured of employment but it was only the Director of Engineering who put the instructions in the form of a text message on the WhatsApp platform that was sent out to them.
He said that the two senior employees indicated to workers that they got the instructions from the General Manager that all employees would have to take the vaccine otherwise they will be sacked.
The staffer said that a conditional decision was taken on those staffers at Silversands who had certain health issues.
He said these workers were told that if they had “an underlying condition they will give you a sick leave for a month and if at the end of the month you still can’t take the vaccine then they will terminate you on the grounds that you are unfit for work”.
He told THE NEW TODAY that a lot of workers at the resort are not inclined to take the vaccine at this point in time.
There are reports that of the 13 persons working in the Engineering Department only 4 workers took the vaccine before the ultimatum was given to staffers.
The employee disclosed that the other nine workers in the Engineering Department have decided not to take the vaccine.
He quoted a senior employee in the HR Department as telling workers that he did not have a problem if they did not take the vaccine as the resort will move to replace them with new employees.
According to the worker, he intends to seek legal advice from an attorney-at-law if Silversands decides to terminate him for failing to take the vaccine.
“I don’t mind spending a money and taking them to court – let us see how it goes from there,” he said.
He also said he would demand a letter from the resort giving the grounds for his termination of employment.
The worker indicated he will consider taking the vaccine if he has to travel overseas and it is necessary to do so.
“I don’t want anybody force me to take it,” he said.
He charged that in the months working at Silversands, the resort has built up a reputation of always trying to intimidate and suppress workers for the most simplest of things.
“Every time they will threaten you with your job,” he remarked.
The worker said that the General Manager at Silversands is a white lady from New Zealand and the Director of Engineering is another white from Britain and both of them are always allegedly threatening the local workers with their jobs.
Silversands is owned by Egyptian billionaire, Naguib Sawiris and is one of those projects that was facilitated under Grenada’s Citizenship By Investment (CBI) programme.