Tour operator Mark Warner has offered its employees the use of trained counsellors following the abduction of toddler Madeleine McCann from its Portuguese holiday complex.
The three-year-old disappeared from an apartment at the Ocean Club resort in Praia da Luz in the Algarve on 3 May. She is believed to have been taken from her bed while her parents were eating at a nearby restaurant on site.
Nigel Ragg, Mark Warner’s head of marketing, told Personnel Today’s sister publication Travel Weekly that the situation had been devastating for employees working both at the resort and in the UK.
“Quite a few of our people have been affected. All of us have become so wrapped up in [the situation]. I have been watching the news all day, every day,” he said.
Two counsellors and company directors have flown out to support resort staff, and another counsellor has spoken with head office staff in London.
“Our staff are doing a fantastic job,” said Ragg. “With something like this, everyone pulls together.”
The tour operator, which employs about 500 employees in the UK, has also been working closely with the police investigation, and supporting the McCann family during their ordeal in Portugal, he added.
In addition to its UK workforce, the company recruits 1,500 people each year to work in its resorts abroad.