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Atlantis asking employees to take unpaid leave or vacation

The Atlantis resort on Paradise Island. FILE

Atlantis is asking its employees to voluntarily take earned vacation days or two weeks of unpaid leave as it seeks to shoulder the burden brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“In this current climate, where COVID-19 is impacting everyone globally, it is no different for us,” Atlantis Senior Vice President of Human Resources Karen Carey said in a memo to employees.

“We want to thank each and every one of you for ensuring that we continue to deliver on our Bahamas at heart guest experience.

“While our efforts continue and we work on this together, it is now essential and important for us to make changes and take further steps to help us all manage through this as situations evolve.

“To this end, we are asking team members to take earned vacations days or volunteer to take two weeks’ unpaid leave of absence effectively immediately. We encourage you to speak with your manager today and confirm your dates.

 “We want you to feel absolutely confident that we are doing our best to shoulder the burden of our operations to secure our future and to lessen the burden that this situation imposes on you. We are all in this together so, let’s continue to be resolute and strong. We remain optimistic that we can count on your support and cooperation at this critical time.”

Ed Fields, a consultant with Atlantis, said it’s too early to tell how many employees will be impacted by this new policy as Atlantis is still awaiting the final number of volunteers.

This request comes as The Bahamas confirmed its first case of COVID-19 on Sunday. The patient, a 61-year-old resident of New Providence, has no recent history of travel.

During a national address last night, Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis forecasted that “this crisis will have a tremendous and widespread economic impact”.

Minnis also announced that foreign guests with recent travel to the United Kingdom, Ireland and Europe will be prohibited entry into The Bahamas.

This is in addition to restrictions already in place for China, Iran, Italy and South Korea.

The new travel restrictions will come into effect on Thursday.

Atlantis is the country’s largest private employer.

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