Sunday 27 September, 2020

Trade unions, government to end negotiations soon

The confrontation between government and public sector trade unions for the 2017 – 2022 trienniums will soon come to an end, perhaps as quickly as next week, as one of the largest public sector trade unions on the island has signalled a need to move quickly to end negotiations with government.

The Civil Service Association (CSA) said that negotiations with the Government of Saint Lucia are still ongoing however significant progress has been made and negotiations are near the end of its process.

Claude Paul, CSA’s General-Secretary noted that the Trade Union Federation negotiating team had presented feedback from affiliate unions and staff Associations to the government negotiating team seeking further clarification regarding the implementation of the offer made to them.

The offer is the proposed increase in salary as agreed for the 2016 -2017 to 2018-2019 triennium. It involved a lump sum of $1,800.00 plus 2% as follows:  2016 - 2017 - 0%, 2017 - 2018 - 1% and 2018 - 2019 - 1%.

For the second triennium, a total of 4% was proposed that breaks down into one percent in 2019 - 2020 another one percent 2020 – 2021 and two percent for the period 2021 - 2022.

The CSA and other affiliates with outstanding terms and conditions within the respective Collective Agreements have been asked to meet with the government negotiating team to finalize those outstanding matters on Monday, July 8, 2019.

“After that, it is anticipated that the Collective Agreements will be signed by the individual unions. The Federation has made a plea to the Ministry of Finance to make every effort to effect the payments in the July salary of Public Officers, staff of Sir Arthur Lewis Community College and other employees of Statutory Bodies. We call on our members to exercise patience and tolerance as we continue to represent your best interest. If there is any need to call you together for decision making in relation to these negotiations, we will do so and would expect that you would respond in large numbers,” Paul said.

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