We are currently seeking information from various colleagues in resorts to fill a questionaire to quantify and build an index of facilities the resorts provide so that we could compare the staff facilities from resorts. The main idea is to have a benchmark to measure and to compare and to educate the resort owners and operators how they fare in comparison with other resorts and operators. This way we believe there will be more awareness among hoteliers as to the shortcomings and merits of their operation and would be an incentive for them to remedy a long thorny issue in staff relations. For reasons of public relations excersises most of our hoteliers would flatly deny if someone even hinted that the services they provide to the staff may not be optimal. However if we are to have a reliable index to measure exactly this updated from reliable information provided by those who are in the ground, we at last would seem to have an edge on this issue. We have just recently forwarded the questionaire to all those who are in our mailing list and maybe obtained directly from here once a comment is added.
According to local media reports there is indeed a protest going full swing in Chaya Island with the protesting staff calling for the employer to abide by the labour law among the many concerns. The protestors are seeking written assuarances from the management that they would indeed do so which would be a difficult demand since issuing such a writ would be admitting to breaking the law which no employer would willingly do.
Among the various concerns the dissatisfied staff raise are:
- that the resort pursues a policy of racial discrimination whereby the Sri Lankan staff are said to recieve favourable conditions in work and pay while the rest Indians, Bangladeshis and Maldivians are said to recieve the less than adequate or favourable treatment in comparision.
- That the management has deliberately filled up all managerial positions in a discriminatory manner and gives no scope for development.
- That the resort has failed to observe the ratio of expatriate quotas which is a direct violation of labour law.
- And the protesting expatriate staff have been threatened with dismissals should they continue with the protest.
Chaya Island which used to be Dhonveli Beach Resort is a popular destination for surfers from Australia and has a full year long tourist season which is unlike many resorts in Maldives. Although popular among surfers the resort has had a bad reputation for illtreating staff under various managements. The current management under John Keels group of hotels has done nothing to address this issue and has infact made matters worse by their unflinching stance on improving relations with staff.