Sandy Lane Incident Raises More Questions Than Answers


At Sandy Lane, it just isn’t about the police grabbing up a worker and questioned and home searched and plastic pulled over his head and baygon sprayed as a form of interrogation tactic. It has to do with the workers putting up with nonsense for several months. Employees knocked off a golf cart by a drunken manager. Manager shipped backed home and nothing coming out of the police report but a quick sweep under the carpet.

A Russian guest threatening to beat an employee and calling him “nigger” and management giving the guest the right in the situation and agreeing with the racial taunting. Enough of that. An intoxicated guest who had an UNDECLARED large sum of Euro apparently reported this money missing. A maid earlier in the morning reported the safe being open in the room while she was carrying out her duties/ which from my understanding meant that the safe was never used by the guest. The money if ever was missing has apparently been returned. This is the second time this particular guest has pulled this prank in order to get a free nights stay at the hotel.

Anyway this accusation led to the summoning of police to Sandy Lane where they took this employee in for questioning in the matter. He was questioned/gassed and home searched and no money was recovered or evidence attained during questioning/gassing. On his return in his gassed state the management suggested he wasn’t looking too well and he it was in his best interest to attend a doctor and take some time home. The workers walked off the job to protest the treatment by the management to their fellow worker and was dismissed claiming they broke an agreement signed in November with the BWU. There is so much incidents reported by employees at Sandy Lane that I would have to create a Sandy Lane blog just to cover it all.

Sir Roy does at time appear to apply hard hand tactics in his negotiations but when dealing with these types of employers it is the only proven method that works. Barbadians must protect themselves not only against these foreign business people coming here and treating Barbadians like scum but we must send a message to everyone that workers’ rights are human rights and they must be respected. So much is brewing and we must use this opportunity in order to get this type of abused put into law so that we can lock up these criminals that come here with the intent to exploit Barbadian workers.

All kinds of roaches have come out with opinions about this matter without even trying to hear the facts. All kinds of business men begging for the strike to be averted but they only mentioning the money lost but up to now no one in interested in you the worker. Strike Monday unless The Prime Minister can settle this dispute. Come out and support your colleagues.

Submitted by BU Commenter TheTrashHeap

We have become concerned in recent days at the queries being expressed in some quarters at the procedure which was used when a Sandy Lane employee was questioned. We are very concerned indeed. According to reports and a fly on the wall there is more going on to this story than meets the eye. We will update this story as details come to hand.

Related Story

Sir Roy Trotman, Grand Ole Duke of York Up To His Old Tricks ~ National Strike Looms In Barbados

27 thoughts on “Sandy Lane Incident Raises More Questions Than Answers

  1. I asked the same question on the other thread and pose it again now:

    what evidence does BU have that trash heap is a reliable “insider”?

    It turns out for example that s/he’s quite wrong about the stolen money having been “apparently” returned (unless Assistant Commisoner Greaves of the RBPF is lying).

    Who told him/her that it had been returned? Was it just hear-say that trash heap believed?

    And if his information is incorrect in this instance, why should we necessarily believe the other very serious claims and allegations quoted above?

    There are any number of stories flying round the rum shops and bars of Bim at the moment – you know how we all love to chat – and all kinds of people claiming to know things ” for a fact”.

    Interestingly enough, trash heap him/herself on the other thread cautions us to be careful not automatically to believe everything we read in the media.

    I agree completely, and would further urge the same caution when reading trash heap’s own comments on this blog…

  2. Typo: Commissioner

    While I’m back, would like to make one further point.

    Trash heap clearly has an agenda of his/her own. Nothing wrong with that (I might even share the same agenda), but I’m just asking readers to bear it in mind.

    Consider the following quotes from the other thread:

    “The Indian community has thrown full support behind The Royal Shop because they feel threatened by Unionized workers in their organizations. ”

    “Barbadians must protect themselves…against these foreign business people coming here”

    Do these comments honestly sound as if they come from an unbiased observer – or rather from someone with an axe to grind?

  3. I don’t have any personal agenda. I believe if a man wrong he wrong and if he right he right. As for being an insider, that I am not. I gathered information over the last few days from various sources at Sandy Lane. By talking to a mid level manager and then to a couple of “victims” involved in this current industrial dispute. The story I gave was a summary of the information I was given, in no way this was all the information I received but I posted what I could corroborate between the two parties who were witnesses to these incidents from different angles and who were privy to more of the “truth” than what the Nation related to the public. I heard stuff that I could not believe would be allowed to happen in Barbados and to tell you the truth I am truly disappointed in a lot of them because some of what I heard that happens on a daily basis to some of the staff in that organization would have prompted me to personal resign from that organization to keep my personal and national pride intact. Everyone cannot afford to do that so they try to put up with the “igrunts” that happens behind those walls. If a few who by the way were not all the unionized workers under the employ of Sandy Lane which means there was clearly a division among the comrades decided enough was enough (though I will never support a wildcat strike) I believe that some form of industrial action was needed and as I said in another post a wildcat strike usually comes because of rashness and inexperience through lack of training in industrial relations.

    Those comments reflect I do have an axe to grind because for too long foreigners come here and treat the Barbadian worker like they are scum. Many of them breach many labour laws. Many of those organizations in the industrial parks in Barbados especially the data entry ones just don’t follow the norm in Barbados and they mistreat many of our workers and when they come together whether be Unionized or just become cohesive enough to cause “trouble” they find ways to dump the trash and rehire fresh victims to just are trying to make an honest dollar and bare with the foolishness that goes on in those places. When threatened with or has faced any industrial action, quick so they pack up and go somewhere else willing to tolerate nonsense. I am never sorry to see them go. The Indians traditionally has it in for the Union because as some others on this blog has probably the same view of the Union as the Indians do. People like Bizzy Williams does everything to keep Unionized workers from around his place. Why you think this happens? Is it because they fear workers with a voice to speak out against them and their policies that maybe only beneficial to them and not to the worker?

    And if you hang out in rum shops talking you are surely going to hear different stories and eventually you will hear two and three different stories from one man as the night goes on. 🙂

  4. For many years the Barbados Police have been using this method of putting plastic bags over the heads of suspects and spraying Baggon or some such insecticide inside of it. This is torture and it leads to death. Barbados is a signatory on a treaty against torture and it boggles my mind that the government allows the Royal Barbados Police force to do this and get away with it.

    I recall about three years ago the Police picked up two teenagers for questioning on a matter and use this same gassing method on both of them and one of them died.

    The Royal Barbados Police explanation was that the youngster died from an asthma attack.
    This asthma attack was brought on because they put a plastic bag over his head and sprayed baggon inside of it. Anyone who suffers from asthma that is a death sentence. Don’t you know that the lapdog media in Barbados, The Nation, The Advocate, CBC, Starcom, just took the Police statement without question, refusing to dig further.

  5. Just so you know trashheap I happen to know one of the central people in the Royal Shop saga, happen to know her as being difficult to work with, happen to know she left or was pushed from a previous job for the same reason (not wanting to be transfered) and even other union members described her as a”strife maker”. Why can everyone else be transfered and not her? Don’t you find that odd. I have friends who work in the port at jewellry places. Sandy lane I have no info on whatsoever

  6. All uh this talk about guest being rude and discriminating against locals, would not have been allowed under White Bajan, Richard Williams, a former GM of Sandy Lane. A hard task master who loved his spirits but a fair minded individual in these sort of matters.

  7. Putting a plastic bag over someone’s face and spraying Baygon inside. I would never imagine that could happen in Barbados. It is shameful and likely illegal.

    If it happened the victim needs to do something about it, though I can imagine he would not want to go to the police about it.

    We have a police complaints authority. Does it work? Do we have lawyers who are interested in finding this kind of work or is everyone too afraid to rock a tight-knit system?

    If it did happen and is being swept under the carpet by the police, media and judiciary it is awful. If this is the result of our social cohesiveness, I say shake it up. We can’t have that kind of thing happening in Barbados in this day and age. Lets find out what really happened in the police station. Bloggers to the Barricades!

  8. Trash Heap’s statement on the Sandy Lane saga doesn’t stand up to scrutiny. The staff member in question was allegedly tortured by the police (if true, it was torture), after they had been summoned by a guest. On returning from the police, management suggested that he go home because he was not looking well. So how does this constitute treatment worth walking off the job for? Did management call the police on the staff member? Did management allegedly “gas” him? Well, according to Trash Heap, they sent him home because he was not looking well. So far, I can only see compassionate treatment from management. He does, after all, have his job back, doesn’t he?

  9. What really goes on in Police stations?

    It would be interesting to find out what really goes on in Police stations around this Barbados. I also feel fairly sure that when that rock is overturn we will not like what crawls out from underneath. My feelings are based bad experiences of close scutiny of fomerly sacred areas.
    Persons with comments should post them on this topic.

  10. The reason I am willing to go along with Trash Heap is because of the ensuing silence following in the wake of the industrial action.

    Since the strike was called off we haven’t heard another word on if the police are going to press charges, if the money has been recovered and what happens from here onwards. I am speaking about an official word from management and police.

    There is something very amiss here; at least that’s the way it looks to me.

    I mean the silence is deafening. I am not so naive to think that silence is golden; far from it. I can safely say that when nothing is being heard, usually that’s the time when a lot of action is happening; of course happening in a very stealthy and surreptitious manner.

    This matter seems far from settled and we may yet to hear another chapter.

  11. Has anyone asked the pivotal question:

    “was there ever any money in the first place?”

    Becasue the guest says he missed money – which, apparently, was not declared and which no-one had seen and has not been found – means the money actually existed? cheupse. Smarten up Bajans, dont let these tourists come down there and outsmart you.

    I heard that there has been small incidents going on at the hotel that the union chose not to deal with at the time they happened. Too small and of no consequence or so they thought. But apparently, to employees they added up. It is like this incident was the last straw for those employees.

    With the Royal Shop that was NOT a transfer. That was a move from an indeterminate full time position to a partime determinate position (week by week). In short that was a DEMOTION with less pay, the first step to a full dismissal. The colleagues and union are right on that score.

    This shifting and calling it a transfer would never be justifed in Canada. A transfer has to be to a job of EQUAL VALUE and with EQUAL PAY and benefits. Otherwise it is anything but.

  12. Anonymous:

    It is called contributory negligence. His gassing/torture would have happened as a result/consequence of his working at the Sandy Lane Hotel, and being accused by a guest. As an employee, mangement is responsible for his safety and protection from injurious actions. If he were not there, it would not have happened (the accusation).

    In business law the management of the Hotel can be held liable for damages for injuries/injustices suffered by the employee while carrying out the duties of his position while working for the hotel.

    He needs to find a good commercial lawyer. I think Leroy should use the union’s lawyer to sue the hotel for damanges on his behalf. Could not happen up here without PROOF that money was stolen and that the victim had access to it. That is why some people who dont know the law complain that the police question them the victim, as though they are the criminals. It has to be done to avoid lawsutis.

  13. It is sad to see that in this day and age when we speak of workers rights so many bajans have to tolerate CRAP from management and why? because we need a a job to feed our families and send our kids to school.

    I trust that one day bajans will get the respect they deserve and will be treated fairly in their own country.

  14. Eureka says:

    “Since the strike was called off we haven’t heard another word on if the police are going to press charges, if the money has been recovered…”

    Wrong. See Thursday’s Nation and the statement by Morgan Greaves, Assistant Commissioner of Police (ag).

    Greaves confirmed that the money was still missing.

    Pat says:

    “I heard that there has been small incidents going on at the hotel that the union chose not to deal with at the time they happened. Too small and of no consequence or so they thought. But apparently, to employees they added up. It is like this incident was the last straw for those employees.”

    You “hear that”? From whom? You’re openly admitting that what you say is just hear-say and consequently of limited credibility. You are simply recycling second-hand gossip….and you’re not even here in Barbados!

    I do agree with you about one thing, though: the need to keep an open mind and not foolishly believe everything we read or hear just because it confirms our own fear or prejudices:

    For example:

    “For many years the Barbados Police have been using this method of putting plastic bags over the heads of suspects and spraying Baggon or some such insecticide inside of it. ”

    Oh really? Says who? Where is the evidence? Why do none of my attorney friends (no fans of the RBPF) corroborate this allegation…?

  15. Incidentally, Pat:

    Re your sneer about tourists above:

    I hope for your sake that your Canadian neighbours show you the respect you obviously lack for foreigners who visit us in Bim…

  16. samizdat talks a alot of sense. It always makes me laughwhen people living over and away talk about ‘what they hear ‘ or ‘what they read ‘ is going here as if they know more than bajans that are actually living here. I know very little about Canada excepet that it is a a large country with far more people than barbados.
    Because every year I read of a serial killer or mass murderer or whatevre in Canada does not make me think that all Canadians are like that so I dont see why Pat should genmralise about Tourists, Bajan Police or the plight of the ‘worker’ here.

  17. In fairness to the Police Force through its PR Barry Hunte a statement was issued reassuring the public that the police carried out its investigation above board concerning the Sandy Lane investigating.

    Why then are we hearing concerns in certain places about the methods of interrogation used which was contained in a statement from the employee questioned?

  18. Wrong. See Thursday’s Nation and the statement by Morgan Greaves, Assistant Commissioner of Police (ag).

    Greaves confirmed that the money was still missing.
    Was any money missing in the first place? Did the guest actually had that type of money on his person or in his room?
    If he did had that amount of money. Was it declared at the point of entry?
    Where is the guest now, is he still in the island?
    If he left the island, did he pay the hotel for his stay?
    Did the authorities check to see if this is a regular occurrence by this guest?

    That is you homework Samizdat.

  19. samizdat

    Remember that we don’t have the resources to chase down leads. We have to use creative measures most of the time to seek underlying points we want to make. Hope that you are reading us here.

  20. Yep, read you loud and clear David.

    Don’t think I’m criticizing BU. You guys and BFP do a terrific job with limited resources.

    Just urging caution and vigilance. My point is that rumour and gossip can suddenly become ‘fact’ if a story gets repeated often and persuasively enough.

    And you know how Bajans love to gossip…

  21. For those of you who think the “tourists” are always right and can do no wrong, good luck. That worker is not, to date, guilty of a theft, but the changes are the tourist is of being a liar. No wonder you are becoming second class citizens in your own country. Remind me next time i’m home to phone the police and say I lost $15,000 Canadian in cash. lol. Lets hope I dont blame any of you on this blog!

  22. samizdat, thanks for the correction; I actually don’t read much of the print stuff but more often than not receive my news via the electronic media.

  23. eureka

    you’re welcome, my friend.

    Tell me Why

    I don’t know the answer to any of these questions, and neither do you.

    That’s the precisely the point I’ve been making.

    Do you understand now?

    Pat says:

    “For those of you who think the “tourists” are always right and can do no wrong, good luck. ”

    But nobody on this thread has suggested any such thing. You’re exaggerating your case in attempt to bolster your own unsubstantiated opinions.

    “That worker is not, to date, guilty of a theft, but the changes are the tourist is of being a liar.”

    Sorry, this is meaningless. What are you trying to say?

    “Remind me next time i’m home to phone the police and say I lost $15,000 Canadian in cash. lol. Lets hope I dont blame any of you on this blog!”

    Good one! I chuckled at that. Though really, you’re much better off where you are so you can continue happily and idly speculating about what’s happening here in Bim…

  24. Police are something else and that is the truth. they do inhumane things all the time and are allowed to get away with it. Now dont get me wrong, I am all for Law and order , and i readily agree that Police should be paid more for their services. But let me tell u some police picked up my friend and beat him up. when he said his father was a task force man; and they looked at his face and realised that he did look like his father; they let him go. PLEASE, dont forget that they pull people’s toenails out and r not CHARGED ha ha ha bajans make me laff.

    There is more to the union strike than meets the eye. somebody help me to understand what is goin on coz for too long we have put up with total CRAP from the Indians and Whites in this countries. and no i am not tryin to be racist, IAM JUST REALLLLL

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