Boatswain pleads for hotel workers

A senior Government Minister wants to see better arrangements made for hotel workers to get to their homes at night after completion of their work.

Education Minister Anthony Boatswain who kicked off the 2015 budget debate in the House of Representatives on Monday said the hotel workers who are mainly women are at physical risk when getting to their home at nights.

Minister Boatswain told the House that many of the workers get of the job at 11:00 p.m. and the buses that are used by the hotels to transport them will not go beyond the drop off point that they have been contracted to reach.

He said that as late as 12 midnight up to 1:00 a.m some workers can be seen  walking to their homes in areas such as St. Patrick’s.

He disclosed that two female hotel workers recently came to him and indicated that they were physically assaulted and almost raped in the dead of night in an area which he said he would not walk “under the brightest sun.”

“I am calling on those responsible to be a little more sensitive,” hetold the Lower House.

THE NEW TODAY understands that for one hotel the drop off point for its workers is the intersection between Mt. Moritz and the Grand Mal main road, while for another hotel it is at Grand Roy in the vicinity of the Grand Roy Police Station for workers on the West Coast of the island.

There are also reports that some hotel workers travelling to St. Andrew’s via Grand Etang the drop off point for them is Vendome St. George while those on the Eastern corridor are dropped off at Red Gate, St. David’s.

According to Minister Boatswain some women out of fear for their safety have decided to sleep at the St. George’s Bus terminal and wait until morning to take a bus to get home, while others have abandoned their jobs.

The senior government minister said he was advised that the drivers of the buses have been instructed that they cannot go beyond the drop-off point designated for the workers.

Meanwhile, Minister Boatswain who is the Member of Parliament for St. Patrick’s West addressed the issue of overcrowding at the Marli cemetery in St. Patrick’s which he said is due mainly to a number of large tombs being erected there.

He stated that while it is the right of an individual to build tombs for their departed love ones,  the problem is that the erected structures are taking up too much space.

The senior government minister notes that the Marli cemetery serves parts of St. Mark’s and St. Andrew’s and the entire parish of St. Patrick’s except for River Sallee which has its own cemetery.

He said he recognises that this is a very sensitive issue but believes that something should be done soon to tackle the problem such as putting a halt to the building of tombs.

Marli is not the only public cemetery on the island affected by limited space for burial of the dead.

Recently, Funeral Directors Clinton Bailey called on government to start identifying alternative lands in the St. George’s area that can be used as burial spots.

Bailey indicated that all of the public cemeteries in the town of St. George and at Grand Anse are quickly running out of available space.

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