Get a licence first!
The National Conservation Commission (NCC) is reminding all persons who want to sell items on any of Barbados’ beaches that they must first get a licence permitting them to do so.
Vendors who fail to comply with regulations could have their licences revoked or suspended, while those caught vending illegally could face legal action. The NCC Act stipulates that any person who desires to operate a business of selling goods or services in a public park, in a public garden, on a beach or in a cave, should first obtain a licence for that purpose from the Commission.
Meanwhile, the NCC is stepping up efforts to crack down on illegal vending on beaches across Barbados, and raise the profile of licensed vendors.
To do this, the Commission has made provisions for its approximately 230 licensed beach vendors to be easily identified through the wearing of polo shirts bearing the beach vending logo on the front, and the words "Beach Vendor" written across the back. In addition, licensed vendors are also required to carry identification cards when working on beaches.
Beach vendors are also being reminded to comply with signs placed on beaches identifying areas where vending can be done legally, and to ply their trades within the designated Vendors’ Markets at the beaches.
Special Projects Officer at the NCC, Mr. Ricardo Marshall, explained that the identification of licensed vendors was not new, but noted that some changes were made to the previous logo and the design of the shirts.
"All this is being done to lift the profile of the licensed beach vendors and make them more visible, and to weed out those who flaunt the law to the [beach] rangers and police," Mr. Marshall said. He added that this was also part of an effort to ensure vendors were comfortable, remove previous stigmas and also allow people to recognise that licensed vendors were also entrepreneurs.
All beach vending licences issued by the NCC are valid for one year. Applicants are required to apply to the NCC’s general manager, present a police certificate of character, information on the proposed beach and the nature of the business they are hoping to operate.
Traditionally beach vending activities were mainly concentrated along the West and South Coasts. However, over the last 10 years areas such as Enterprise, Christ Church; Bathsheba, St. Joseph and Carlisle Bay, St. Michael became viable options for those seeking to earn an income by working on the beach.