Minister of Labor Emil Lee explores employment opportunities for locals on cruise lines
During the Council of Ministers’ press briefing of Wednesday, June 19, Minister of Public Health, Social Development and Labor Emil Lee announced that the Ministry would be seeking out the possibility for Sint Maarten nationals to gain employment on cruise lines. In a recent meeting with the representatives and members of the (Florida Caribbean Cruise line Association) FCCA, the barriers and opportunities were discussed. In the past, one of the barriers has been the legislation surrounding the jurisdiction for disputes and hiring in foreign-flagged vessels.
“According to the FCCA representatives, legislation has been adjusted in other countries where workers are contracted. The Ministry has since received some examples of the adjustment in legislation and will continue to follow up to assess whether these might prove beneficial to our nationals. The learning and earning potential for Sint Maartener’s in the cruise industry is attractive and will be explored more.” – Minister Emil Lee
Employment in the cruise line industry has several benefits and opportunities. The most obvious one would be the opportunity to see the world. For persons interested or specialized in the hospitality or service industry, the customer satisfaction standards and ratings in the cruise industry are very high, making this a great experience to gain valuable work experience. Another benefit of employment in the cruise industry is that employee meals and housing are on board, making it financially attractive for workers and easier to save for the future.
Another topic of discussion with the representatives of the FCCA was the access to health care services on Sint Maarten for cruise line staff when on Sint Maarten. The cruise lines do have medical practitioners on board, however, there may be instances where additional medical services are needed.
“As Sint Maarten expands the range and depth of services that we offer at the SMMC, the opportunity to provide these services, which includes testing, diagnoses, and treatments to cruise line staff, becomes possible. As we evolve our health care sector these talks with the FCCA can continue.” – Minister Emil Lee