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Lifeguards and beach attendants undergo disability training

The Ministry of Equality has delivered front line staff training on general disability awareness and disability language and etiquette for lifeguards and beach attendants.

The training was carried out over three sessions last week.

A total of 76 individuals, who will be employed by the Department of the Environment in all public beaches and at the GSLA Bathing Pavilion including the accessible pool during the summer season, have undergone the training.

This includes three members of the Department of the Environment, 12 beach attendants, 19 bathing pavilion attendants and 42 lifeguards.

This training, which focuses on teaching staff how to better deal with and address with people with disabilities, will complement the excellent training already received by lifeguards and attendants in relation to their responsibilities and will enhance the experience of using the facilities already available to people with disabilities at our public bathing areas.

The training was delivered by Jason Belilo from the Ministry of Equality.

Mr Belilo was certified as a trainer by UK Charity ‘Attitude is Everything’ last year and has already previously delivered this training in the public sector.

Minister for the Environment Dr John Cortes and Minister for Equality Samantha Sacramento addressed the trainees and handed out their certificates.

Ms Sacramento said: “This in-house training we are offering is a very important tool in raising general disability awareness within the services that Government provides.”

“Seeing that this Government has invested significantly in making our beaches more accessible, it was only natural to include lifeguards and attendants in our ongoing training programme to ensure that we provide the best service possible.”

“This is another step towards making our community more inclusive of people with disabilities.”

Dr Cortes said: “The training of lifeguards in these areas is vital, and necessary to ensure they perform their duties to the highest standards. These young people are an important part of our summer months and will ensure that enjoyment of our beaches is totally inclusive. They have greatly enjoyed this training".

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