PWA's Chiquot Calls Newly Signed Collective Agreements a Victory
Members of the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force are more at ease now following the completion of negotiations for two trienniums: April 2016 – March 2019 and April 2019 - March 2022.
The Police Welfare Association (PWA) and the Government Negotiating Team (GNT) today Friday, May 17, 2019, signed the two Collective Agreements in the presence of the acting Labour Commissioner Cornelia Jn Baptiste.
To PWA President Travis Chiquot, the signing was a victory for his members who over the years have been calling for salary increases and better fringe benefits.
“I think we did well in terms of what we wanted, given the government’s fiscal position and the number of critical issues facing the country,” Chiquot told Loop News.
He said the PWA membership considered several factors that were critical to them at this time and felt the decent thing to do was to accept the proposals before them, something they did unanimously.
Chiquot thank the GNT for accommodating his members when they felt the process was going on too slow.
“We agreed on a number of positions. The real purpose of the negotiations was really to add value to the members of the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force,” Chiquot said.
“I am happy that members will see a shift in salaries coming in the (next) few days and that they would enjoy the benefits coming to them,” Chiquot said shortly after having signed the Agreements.
He believes that the part in the new Agreement that deals with insurances will go a long way in boosting the morale of police officers as they go about tackling the issue of crime.
Chiquot thanked his members for being patient during the period of negotiations.
Meanwhile Vern Gill, Chairman of the GNT expressed his appreciation of how the negotiations went saying the environment and exchanges between the two parties were cordial. He thanked the PWA for its application of skill and thought to the whole process.
“We are pleased that negotiations have ended. I believe that what the documents reflect is a fair representation of the interest of both parties and a settlement I believe the employer and the employees can be comfortable with,” Gill said, when asked to say a few words after the signing by Jn Baptiste.