Cavanagh: Annual turnover of local workforce in hotels 50-60%

THE annual turnover rate for the hotels’ local workforce is 50 to 60 percent, according to Hotel Association of Northern Mariana Islands president Gloria Cavanagh.

Speaking before members of the House of Representatives on Thursday, she said a majority of these positions are unskilled such as housekeeping and ground-keeping jobs.

She said many of their local employees are also students who don’t work full-time.

“When we are talking about unskilled positions, we usually hire students. But when the students have to go back to school, we lose them. There is also a competition for the local workforce, and many go from one workplace to another. These are indications that we just don’t have enough local workers. Some also leave the island for college. Others quit when they get sick.”

She said because of the labor shortage, many local workers have two jobs, but when they work longer hours at their full-time positions, they have to quit their part-time jobs.

There are also local workers who have to be laid off because of excessive absences or tardiness, or for failing a drug test, among other reasons, she said.

Cavanagh told lawmakers that she applauds the Public School System for implementing a program that allows students to work part-time especially during the summer so they can be trained for job positions.

“But it is only during the summer or vacations that they can be allowed to work and when they graduate they go somewhere else. Northern Marianas College is also doing its best to provide training programs for the students, but the numbers are still not enough.”

Hotels and other local businesses are asking the U.S. government to increase, and not reduce, the CW cap, and to extend the federal program when it ends in Dec. 2019.

Source: Marianas Variety :

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