Tourism workers undergo COVID-19 training

More than 400 workers of the tourism and hospitality sector have undergone health, safety and disinfectant training to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic.

They were also trained in the use of proper sanitizing measures, correct use of disinfectant chemicals and application of appropriate personal protection equipment.

The Samoa Tourism Authority recognised the need for a COVID-19 health, safety and disinfectant training to upskill tourism employees on health measures and protocols, due to the global pandemic and its impact on the industry.

The S.T.A. worked in collaboration with health professionals from the Ministry of Health to deliver the training. 

This is to ensure employees are highly protected from exposure to the contagion and are well versed with measures to prevent spread of the virus or any airborne diseases. 

According to the S.T.A. the training is important with the health and safety of employees at a high priority as they provide services in hosting guests travelling into the country from repatriation flights.

Workers from a total of 72 tourism industry accommodation providers in Upolu and Savai’i underwent the training in the past few months.

S.T.A. Chief Executive Officer, Faamatuainu Suifua, said as Samoa continues to receive repatriation flights, it is critically important that the sector is well informed of the preventative procedures and health standards and are provided with continued support.

“The response from the [tourism] industry has been tremendous and the awareness programme is highly accepted,” he said in a statement by S.T.A.

“Though we do not have tourists from overseas but our properties are still catering to our local tourists while others are used as quarantine sites for our returning citizens.”

Faamatuainu said it is hoped that the initiative, open the reopening of Samoa’s international borders, will ensure the tourism industry is ready and well aware of the appropriate health measures.

There are also plans to continue this training for all the closed properties when they restart businesses.

Applicable disinfectant substances and P.P.E. were also distributed to the various accommodation providers, who were appreciative and grateful for the equipment as they all contributed to achieving the training outcomes.

The training was carried out in conjunction with hotel and accommodation providers including beach fales.

The S.T.A. and the local tourism industry expressed its gratitude to the New Zealand government for funding the training under the Samoa Tourism Growth Partnership Programme. 

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