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TCHTA Hosts Historical Initiative with CHTA Education Foundation; 415 certified

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#TurksandCaicos, November 18, 2022 – The Turks & Caicos hospitality sector has embarked on the journey to heartfelt, supercharged service with the completion of a training series delivered by the Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association Education Foundation.

Hosted and facilitated by the Turks & Caicos Hotel and Tourism Association (TCHTA), more than 400 employees were taken through the CHTAEF’s signature Caribbean Supercharged Service Training.  Sessions dubbed “Heartfelt Guest Care”, “Realistic Leadership”, “Happy Housekeepers”, and “007 Secret Care Agents” saw participation from front-facing and back of house staff from entry level to management from the tourism sector, civil service, and private sector.

The CHTA Education Foundation’s excitement for the success of the partnership has been palpable. “We are incredibly proud of this milestone in our 36-year history and pleased that the Education Foundation was able to deliver a five-week comprehensive training in partnership with TCHTA and the various properties, businesses and government across the Turks and Caicos Islands. The open and honest communication with the team at the TCHTA enabled us to deliver training that met the needs of their member properties and hospitality workers that participated in the program.” said Karolin Troubetzkoy, Chairwoman of the CHTAEF.

As a part of its 30-year anniversary commemoration exercises, the TCHTA facilitated the initiative and hosted the volunteer trainers for 5 weeks with great thanks to its members Grace Bay Club, Ocean Club Resorts, The Shore Club, Blue Haven Resort, and The Sands. These properties were homes to the trainers, Louise John and Suzanne Shillingford-Brooks throughout their time in Turks and Caicos.

The high-energy dynamic duo raved about the warm welcome extended to them by everyone they encountered. Commenting on the engagement in the training sessions, they remarked “We have been impressed by the overall willingness of participants to up their game, improve their delivery skills, understand their visitors better; so being able to achieve personal uplifts immediately in their workspaces, that many report have delighted guests and management alike”.

The Certificate Celebration marking the successful end to the training initiative was held on Friday, November 11th in the Messell Ballroom at The Palms. A fitting achievement celebrated during the country’s Tourism Environmental Awareness Month, Deputy Governor Anya Williams, Minister of Tourism Hon Josephine Connolly, and visiting EF Trustee, Professor Mike Hampton, attended the event in support of the excited trainees’ accomplishments. In his remarks, Professor Hampton encouraged the trainees “To every participant, remain energized and sparkle in your care to everyone you encounter!”

Stacy Cox, TCHTA CEO shared with media “We were ecstatic to learn from the Education Foundation that Turks & Caicos will be considered trailblazers for our one-of-a-kind tailoring of the EF’s training and having the largest contingent they’ve trained in 36 years. TCHTA members and employers throughout the country have truly shown their commitment to the development of their employees, and there’s no doubt Brand TCI will be all the better for it.” She continued, “We can’t say enough about the effectiveness of this program. Louise and Suzanne delivered the kind of training that is true to the essence of Caribbean service. It’s relatable, and that is why employees are excited to implement what they have learned, and HR Managers have shared that they saw the benefits immediately and are eager for us to do this again soon.”

The TCHTA thanks the Education Foundation and encourages other NHTAs in the region to take advantage of the program. The association extends special appreciation to its members for the continued support shown to building the sustainability and growth of the industry and the country.

 

PHOTO CAPTION:

We are so proud of each of the 415 participants in our national Caribbean Service Ready training in the Turks & Caicos Islands.  Louise John & Suzanne Shillingford-Brooks, take a bow. You Did It!  Thank you to the Turks and Caicos Hotel and Tourism Association and all our industry partners.  Photo by Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association

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Caribbean News

Barbados bestows Humanitarian Award on PAHO director Dr. Carissa Etienne 

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By Shanieka Smith

Staff Writer

 

#Barbados, November 25, 2022 – The newest recipient of Barbados’ Humanitarian Award is outgoing Pan American Health Organization Director, Dr Carissa Etienne.  The government of Barbados grants this award to frontline workers who were instrumental during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Upon receiving the award, Dr. Etienne expressed her gratitude for the recognition, noting, however, that she was more grateful for the opportunity to have served on the island. She also praised Prime Minister, Mia Mottley for her diligence in leading the country and regional involvement during the pandemic.

Humanitarian medals were also given to Frontline workers who risked their own safety to ensure the needs of the public were met. Those who held supporting roles on the frontline received humanitarian lapel pins, and those who made generous donations were given humanitarian plaques.

Dr. Etienne highlighted one major lesson from the pandemic, “we are only safe when the weakest among us is also safe”.

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Bahamas News

Bahamas and Turks & Caicos Immigration Ministers make appearance on TCI Radio Talk Show

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By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

#TheBahamas, November 25, 2022 – “We have a humanitarian concern of course but we can only absorb so much” was how Fred Mitchell, Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Public Service in The Bahamas addressed the issue of the UN constantly nudging Caribbean countries about the deportation of migrants and recommending that it not be done.

He was speaking Thursday November 24 with Cheryl and Zhavargo on First Edition which airs on RTC FM.

While acknowledging that the UN offices likely ‘have to do what they do’ Minister Mitchell  explained that the current irregular migrants trying to get into the Bahamas did not fit the bill of ‘refugees’ as defined by the UN.

“We have a treaty obligation that says that if people have a fear of persecution in their home country that we have an obligation to take them in as asylum seekers. The people who come through on these boats from the south of us are not asylum seekers. They are afraid of poverty and that’s a difficult issue but in a legal sense we’re not obligated to embrace people on that basis.”

He cited a study that had found, on any given day there were around 7,000 illegal migrants in The Bahamas trying to get to the US maintaining that his chain of islands had to take a stand on the issue.  The Foreign Affairs minister acknowledged that  TCI was in an identical situation, citing also the the cultural effects of irregular migration.

“There is a cleavage which has developed in our own society over this; people are very concerned that we could lose our identity if we do not get on top of it.”

Earlier this year Arlington “new sheriff in town” Musgrove, Minister of Immigration and Border Services in the Turks and Caicos had described statements calling on surrounding countries to do more to assist persons fleeing Haiti as “reckless and misguided.”

“Haiti has a population of 11.6 million people. How could any small developing state like the Turks and Caicos Islands assist that number of people or even the smallest fraction of them? We have a population of some 47,000 persons, and our health care, education and other social systems remain fragile and could never withstand an influx of refugees. This would be a risk to our very own livelihood,” he had said.

He was interviewed in the same show on Thursday prior to Mitchell and expressed a similar determination to crack down on illegal migration.

“I want to stress this. If we catch anyone harbouring illegals, it could be my mommy, she’s going up. We cannot tolerate this. We’re catching the sloops so my Haitian brothers and sisters should stress to them don’t waste your money we’re sending you back.”

Turks and Caicos, this year passed a law, doubling fines and prison times for individuals harbouring illegal migrants.

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Bahamas News

Former Bahamian Cabinet minister defends record amid ongoing police investigation

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By Shanieka Smith

Staff Writer

 

#TheBahamas, November 25, 2022 – Former Youth, Sports and Culture Minister, Lanisha Rolle is reportedly currently under investigation due to several allegations that came up during her tenure; she however knows nothing of this alleged criminal investigation.

After the minister resigned – unceremoniously –  in February 2021 with little explanation, the ministry was locked down by the Prime Minister for an audit of the National Sports Authority, which fell under her ministry.

Auditor General Terrance Bastin revealed that unauthorised contracts had been issued, some of which were later forwarded to the NSA for payment. Three cheques to contractors were also found, which were paid to individuals and then collected by a senior ministry official.

Despite the allegations, Rolle said she upheld cabinet standards and good governance during her tenure. She added that a minister is not always aware of “everything in a ministry at any given time.”

Rolle said she has not yet been approached by the RBPF regarding the audit findings.  Having served as a member of the Police Force for 11 years herself, Rolle told a crush of media on Wednesday (November 23) that she continues to trust that they will follow the legal process and in due time, the truth of her innocence will be revealed.

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