Strike is over! CSA government workers vote to return to work after reaching compromise

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Strike is over! CSA government workers vote to return to work after reaching compromise

President of the Civil Service Association (CSA) Mary Isaac has confirmed that members of the public sector union have voted to end the three-week strike and return to work tomorrow, Tuesday, April 9, 2013.

The CSA has accepted the government’s condition that members of the union return to work to facilitate continued negotiations, especially in light of new proposals submitted by the CSA.

The news comes hours after CSA members held a placard-bearing march through Castries protesting over what the union describes as unfair treatment from the government in the wage-increase negotiations.

Isaac told St. Lucia News Online this evening that after a “fruitful” meeting with the Government Negotiating Team (GNT) last Friday, the members, after the end of today’s march, decided to “meet the government half way”.

Isaac said the move was taken because the government “reached out to us when they had a meeting with us last Friday”.

In that meeting, Isaac said the CSA representatives “tabled a set of new proposals” which the GNT said they would consider on the condition that the workers return to work.

“The GNT said they would not respond to our proposals while workers are on strike… they would not respond under duress,” she said.

“They (GNT) have shown good faith by meeting with us,” the union president pointed out.

The CSA had previously refused the GNT’s offer to call off the strike first before negotiations could continue.

Asked if this new decision stemmed from pressure, after all the other public sector unions signed onto government’s four-percent wage offer, Isaac admitted: “We were pressured to go a different route in terms of looking at a different way of settling the matter as opposed to negotiating the 9.5 percent… We were able to arrive at a better compromise due to the pressures that were inserted on us.”

The news also comes hours after the Saint Lucia Chamber of Commerce and Agriculture released a statement on the impasse, calling for the matter to go to arbitration.

The Chamber stated: “The St. Lucia Chamber of Commerce Industry and Agriculture is strong in its conviction that industrial unrest is not a very useful tool in the current delicate economic circumstance of the country and as such believes that the time for arbitration has arrived. Clearly dialogue has run its course.  The Chamber thus insists that the parties proceed forthwith to arbitration.”

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18 COMMENTS

  1. i think the civil servants are selfish, they think they are the only one that need an increase, what about people working in office and supermakets etc, they dont care about st. lucia, the country is still recovering from that large increas they got from the previous government, civil servants calm down and go back to work.

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  2. I have to agree with a lot of the postings here. The March was of no consequence after a "fruitful" meeting on Friday.And if this whole thing was politically motivated, we really have a lot of people here who do not love sweet St. Lucia

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  3. Tell the Chamber of Commerce president to stop playing politics and showing his party colours but me a good leader.......or ask his brother to give scotiabank they money back.

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  4. it is amazing how some ppl are so quick to sit behind a computer and express themselves freely only to show their lack of information. it is just so sad that some of us st lucians dont even know our rights, we dont know the last word in the staff orders farless the first word in the labor laws. i was brought up to not always accept what is given to me but rather fight for what i want. and to go futher, all the inventors this world have come across if they accepted the first results they got and not fight for better do you think that this world would so advanced, (think about this for a second), people can say that has transpired is what every motivated...at the end of the day...voices have been heard and hence action will be taken. men must always remember that they are not GODs when they have power, cause although jesus died he rose again, how many leaders have u heard that died and rose again???

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  5. you have a right to be anonymous.. because it is ppl like who have political colors no matter what... when persons like the csa take a stand they take a stand for all our children and for our children's children...(hypocrite)

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    • "lucia" you're just another sheep following blindly. smh. 3wks strike was not necessary, not because it was the way of the past makes it suitable for today. Open your eyes, CSA could have/ should have done a better job.

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    • Lucia, I think you missed the point. If there was an agreement (and I say if) between the CSA and GNT prior to the march, then what was the point in having the march? According to the news report the members voted to return to work after the march, but my understanding also tells me that this decision was based on the meeting between the CSA and the GNT from last Friday's meeting. So I say againg what was the purpose of having the match?

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  6. I have a question, it may sound dumb but if the meeting on friday was "fruitful" and the GNT reached out on friday and met the union half way....why were they marching today? Politics at work?? Because the placards beared little resemblance of the purpose of the strike but of name calling and politrics...UWP had a meeting lastnight... hmmmmm

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      • KOIL????? ummmm the link was to say what???? smh the post was made yesterday after the MARCH??? so where your link coming in there??? I dont understand....but do you read the news???? or are you even in St. Lucia LMFAOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO #fail

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  7. Mary, Mary, jumping up...Mary, Mary, jumping up. Mary you are the worst union leader ever. If the GNT agreed to your demands last week Friday, then what purpose did your march serve. You have held the negotiations hostage...bet the police and nurses are enjoying their increases already. Get over yourself Mary...your façade didn't work. 'lot kotay'...

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    • you!!!!
      u see u , u have not the slimmest idea as to what u talking about. some ppl instead on coming on the blog and making a fool of them self, should just keep their thoughts to them selves.smh!!!

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  8. SMH at the CSA. That strike was a waste of time. It served no purpose other than to hurt the economy (3 wks paid vacation plus other losses). CSA, next time be more civilized by negotiating without strike or going to arbitration without striking.

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    • Mary is feeling so proud of herself. Did you see her last night on news? This woman just wanted to make fame, so she used this opportunity. Don't be surprise if next election you hear she is a candidate for the UWP. That was her way of paving her self in the spotlight.

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