STRIKE: Civil servants represented by CSA take industrial action

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STRIKE: Civil servants represented by CSA take industrial action
Civil Service Association (CSA) Mary Isaac
Civil Service Association (CSA) Mary Isaac said the strike will last indefinitely.

As of today, Monday, March 18, 2013, government workers represented by the Civil Service Association (CSA) will take strike action until their employer gives them what they desire: 9.5 percent wage increase or a suitable alternative offer.

Today’s industrial action does not involve nurses, teachers, police officers, and fire officers because unions representing those civil servants have agreed to the government’s four-percent wage package.

The CSA decided to strike during a closed meeting with members at the CSA Centre in San Souci, Castries on Friday, March 15.

Explaining the reason behind the industrial action, CSA President Mary Isaac told reporters on Friday that members do not get some of the benefits other groups, such as teachers and police officers got, so they cannot sign off on a four-percent increase.

Isaac said CSA members feel disrespected and unappreciated. She said the strike will last indefinitely with hopes that the government would reconsider its decision.

Though the CSA is the only trade union under the Trade Union Federation (TUF) umbrella that has not signed a deal with the government, Isaac said some of the other union members support their cause because they are aware that CSA members are not entitled to some of the benefits that they have been given.

The civil servants first made their intentions to strike known at a meeting on Wednesday, March 13. In the minutes of that meeting the CSA rejected the four-percent wage increase with conditions proposed by the Government Negotiating Team (GNT), saying the “conditions highlighted by the GNT was more of a ‘smoke screen’”.

According to the minutes of the meeting: “There was nothing concrete in their proposal that satisfied the members. It was more like ‘empty’ promises presented to civil servants.  Also, the members noted that accepting the four percent increase will not be beneficial to officers in grades 1 to 5. Yes, the teachers and police may be willing to accept this offer but bear in mind that these officers’ salaries start at grade 7.”

It added: “Another point to note is that all members, which fall under the TUF (Trade Union Federation) umbrella must all agree to a common decision in order for negotiations to come to closure.  The information provided by the media by certain individuals was used as scare tactics so that the other unions accept the 4 percent.

“Finally, we the members of CSA moved a motion that we are willing to settle for 9.5 percent increase without conditions this time around.  The GNT and TUF are to meet some time tomorrow (Thursday, March 14) to consider our proposal.  On Friday (March 15), CSA members plan to meet again to discuss the outcome of the said meeting (GNT/TUF) and if we are not satisfied with the result we strike (shut down the country).”

According to the minutes of the meeting, conditions which “we initially requested will be negotiated at the next round 2013/2016”.

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25 COMMENTS

  1. i personally eh give a fuck about no country cuz wen im hungry dey eh know. so im looking for my bread because i work n deserve it. why dont yll tell the PM to think about the country before purchasing all dem BMWs n plus gas to put in dem. using the country's money for his non sense.

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  2. I feel sorry for some of you with some of the foolish comments I'm reading here. So clueless! Wow! If you think this is just about salary increase then I won't even bother to comment further...sigh

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    • It's about CSA holding the country hostage rather than continuing negotiations or going to arbitration. That's what we have the courts for.

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  3. Many teachers and other public service workers support the CSA 100%. Many of you say that the civil servants are unproductive. What solid evidence do you have to support this, its a whole bunch of nonsense.(not answering a phone... is that what they get paid to do? Sitting by the phone, did it ever cross your mind that while you are calling the worker is assisting someone else . . .) Many of you who say these things won't be able to do the work which these people do. ALL organisations have slackers,this does not mean that everyone is a slacker; so stop categorising ALL civil servants as slackers. There are hundreds of hard working civil servants who go above and beyond their call of duty. Should they be denied a decent salary increase because some of you think they do not work? One last point, LUCELEC staff got 10%, a private company. So maybe some of you need to get your unions to fight for your rights instead of comparing your private workplace with the public service.

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  4. maybe if some of yll were members of the public service we would see where csa is cuming from instead of talking nonsensical crap

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    • Maybe you and the rest of CSA members who support this should think of your country first and then talk..... Many CSA members don't deserve a raise and that's a FACT!

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  5. fighting for our rights is exactly what our representatives are doing for us and as u can see we support her.

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  6. what about when u call banks and u are transferred to all sorts of customers service officers. some of us refuse to walk to deal with our business so saying we not answering our phone is a ridiculous statement.

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    • Its not ridiculous, its true!! And when u finally get through the person who deals with your particular issue is not at his/her desk and nobody knows when they will be back. about 85% of the time... And furthermore, because you think that banks do it does not give civil servants the right to do it too. SMH

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  7. I swear more than half the population of st.lucia get aroused when they hear Kenny Anthony, stop treating everything in terms of yellow n red, we cannot afford 9.5 so Csa stop behaving like children..............

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  8. Missing the point folks. If you examine the packages offered to the other sectors amounts to 6 - 7.5% respectively. Public Servants are a special group of workers having to work under a under a number of restrictions/protocols. Remember in their latest round of negotiations the CSA proposed: 6.5%, 5% and as low as 4.5% with conditions. These were all rejected by the GNT. So I ask where is the BEEF for Civil Servants? Kenny is paying for his sins.

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    • Yes other sectors get 6 - 7.5% BUT CIVIL SERVANTS WANT 9.5%!!!........ In essence they want more than the rest. WRONG!!!

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    • Yall act like Civil Servants are the worst set of people. If that is so I wonder who makes all the money for Government with civil servants lazy behinds. My friend unproductivity doesn't only lie in the Civil Service.

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  9. You will only get 9.5% in your dreams Mary. Where is your conscience. I hear some civil servants talking about NICE. Saying how the government should wipe out these projects and pay them. How selfish and self centered. I get really angry when I hear all this foolishness, cause people like myself in the private sector don't know when last I got an increase. As a matter of fact, some of our allowances were taken away from us and our salary is like on a month and a half basis. that's how bad it is. So stop all this crap and get back to work cause there are too many hard working people out there that need a job....

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    • you said "As a matter of fact, some of our allowances were taken away from us and our salary is like on a month and a half basis.""
      where is your union to represent you to prevent this form happening. this happened and u allowed it? this is exactly what the csa is currently fighting for, stop allowing management to do what they are pleased wit workers. you have a rite use it.chipz

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  10. Its is all about Grades 1-5 intrest, I agree some of them are inefficient , but they have to fight for their rigths also.

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  11. Police officers and Teachers who go above and beyond to carry out their duties accepted the 4% increase offered by the PM, after stating that StLucia is in no position to offer a wage increase at present...........Civil servants who are the most inefficient and unproductive want a 9% increase in these turbulent financial times,SMFH!!

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    • AGREED!!!......... 9.5% at these hard economic times is unreasonable. While some may deserve a raise a vast number of civil servant workers have been proven to be inefficient....... SEND THEM TO ARBITRATION I SAY!!!

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    • You think ALL Police and Teachers go above and beyond to carry out their duties but you don't think SOME civil servants do? Seriously? SAD. I wonder who brings in the revenue to Government. Police? Teachers?

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  12. That woman just wants notice. Those people are just there for themselves. It is politically motivated. I read it's because she was not considered the candidate for Castries South. If that is really true God Forbid. Selfish greedy people.

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