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Caribbean News Today

BARBADOS- Public Service Union gives government ultimatum

Featured NUPW General Secretary Roslyn Smith NUPW General Secretary Roslyn Smith
BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, Nov 1, CMC – The National Union of Public Workers (NUPW) has warned that it would embark upon industrial action on Wednesday if the Barbados government fails to reinstate its president Akanni McDowall to the acting senior position from which he was removed.

NUPW General Secretary Roslyn Smith said that the union’s National Council met Monday and gave the green light for the union to take whatever action it deemed necessary to force the Personnel Administration Division (PAD) to reinstate McDowall.

She said the NUPW is yet to receive a response from the Chief Personnel Officer (CPO) to a request made two weeks ago for a meeting to discuss the issue.

 “We had a unanimous decision to take whatever action we deem necessary to bring a resolution to the matter as quickly as possible,’ she said, adding that the union members will meet on Tuesday to decide on the strategy that will be implemented.

“We wrote the Chief Personnel Officer two Fridays ago and we were of the view we would have been given an early response, but to date, we have no such response,” she said, warning if a response is not received by Tuesday “we will be putting things in train to bring pressure to bear on the Government to have the brother reinstated”.

Smith said that the situation involving McDowall extended beyond the union president.

“This issue will affect all public officers who could find themselves in a similar position and with the lack of consultation,” Smith said.

McDowall, who elected president in May 2015, was unceremoniously removed from the senior position of Acting Health Planning Officer 1 and sent back to his substantive post of Environmental Health Assistant 1.

The union has claimed that the decision was nothing short of victimization, noting that he had recently been strongly opposed to Government’s efforts to privatize the state-run Sanitation Service Authority.

However, Minister of Labour Dr Esther Byer-Suckoo said last week there was no victimization in the removal of McDowall from his acting position.  Dr Byer-Suckoo said as far as she was aware McDowall’s time in the acting position had simply come to an end.

  • Countries: Barbados

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