At least two organisations representing public sector workers decided not to show up at a recent government meeting held to discuss salary-cut proposals.
That meeting was held on Friday, June 13 in which unions and associations were to present recommendations in response to government’s proposal. The wage cuts are a means of reducing the country’s $76-million deficit.
The Civil Service Association (CSA) and the Police Welfare Association (PWA) have both confirmed that they did not attend the meeting.
According to CSA President Mary Isaac, the association had “no real reason” to attend because it had not yet brought the recent proposal to its membership for discussion.
In late May and early June, Isaac had told the media that the CSA had not been in receipt of such proposals. But in an interview on Monday however, she confirmed that the CSA had received the document and intends to meet with its membership on June 23 on the matter. From that meeting, recommendations and/or decisions are expected to be made and later communicated to the government.
Meanwhile, Camron Laure, president of the PWA told St. Lucia News Online that the PWA also skipped Friday’s meeting.
He said the PWA’s membership had decided that they should instead await a response on a letter the association presented to the government last week, asking that government formulates a negotiating team to discuss the terms of the proposed wage cut. The PWA said last week, in an interview, that proper negotiations are paramount.
The Saint Lucia Nurses Association was represented at Friday’s gathering. Several recommendations were made in response to the government’s wage cut proposal and are now in “the government’s court for consideration,” according to the association’s First Vice President Andrew Leo, speaking to SNO.
He said there is no date set for a next meeting or response from government on the matter.
Efforts to reach the other unions and representing bodies have been futile thus far.