Nation e-Edition

No to strike action

No to strike action

By Carol Martindale | Sun, January 13, 2013 - 12:08 PM

To strike or not to strike – that is the question.

I vote for the latter.

Barbados could well be on course for a national strike, the biggest in the private sector since 1981 when thousands – about 5 000 -  marched through the City demanding the reinstatement of David Giles, a technician and union delegate at the Barbados Telephone Company.

Ironically, this time, the impending strike action surrounds the dismissal of 97 workers from telecommunications giant LIME.

Sir Roy Trotman, general secretary of the Barbados Workers’ Union  has called on LIME to withdraw the letters. LIME, however, has not budged from its position to date.

With a breakdown in talks last week between the two groups, this country could be facing an islandwide strike.

While I empathize with those who have lost their jobs, this is not the time to be contemplating strike action.

With a clear understanding of the principle of standing up for one’s rights, there are times when as a responsible society, we have to look at the bigger picture.

Talk and threats of strike action are more than irresponsible at a time when this country can ill afford it.

Barbados’ economy is struggling and workers – both in the private and public sector – are nervous about their jobs.

I hasten to emphasize how unfortunate it is that the 97 workers are no longer employed. No one wants to lose their job at this time when they are so hard to come by, no matter how qualified you are.

Gauging public opinion from The Nation’s website and Facebook page, a large number of Barbadians are not in favour of a strike.

Sir Roy says he is holding the date close to his chest, but I am not confident, even when he releases the date “for the day of reckoning”, that the union will get the numbers they may be expecting.

Some have already decided they will not be moving from their desks.

I have no doubt that the union will choose a date when the impact would be greatest and felt by the country.

We are in the middle of our winter season, when thousands of cruise passengers arrive. Given that Port workers constitute a large part of union membership, a day when there is a crush of visitors and a great work load at the Port  will more than likely be D-day.

I urge the union to stop and think about the larger picture and the serious repercussions for this country.

Go back to the bargaining table.


And then talk some more until this issue is resolved.

Barbados cannot deal with a strike at this time, nor do the people of this country want it.

Then, if there is no resolution in sight – enter Prime Minister Freundel Stuart.

Carol Martindale is the Nation's Online Editor

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Page 1 of 1 pages

Posted by John Da Silva 1 year, 9 months ago
The no point in talking because the union is not listening.

  • 14
Posted by Winston Grecia 1 year, 9 months ago
And if it happens to affect the Cruise Liners, you can guarantee the Cruise Lines pulling out of Barbados for the rest of the season, they are plenty of islands willing to take up the slack for removing Barbados out of the itinerary.

  • 5
Posted by Bim Bum 1 year, 9 months ago
I want to see LIME shut down telecomms island-wide for a token 24 hrs.
- just to show who got what kinda power!

When Mr.Trotman picks up his phone?...Dead!

Trotty gone to check his email?....Dead!

Hope he has a Digicel phone to call all the other Digicel numbers,
because all the LIME numbers will be?....Dead.

  • 13
Posted by Sarah Layne 1 year, 9 months ago
How many of the 97 workers are complaining about losing their jobs AND how many of them are unsatisfied with the payout they have been given.. that would be my question.. unless all of the 97 are willing to give up what they have been given and take up arms against LIME, the strike holds no meaning. and many of those people have been hired already.. are they going to strike and if so, will this not effect their current employment???

not the way this island should be operating..sad.. very very sad..

  • 5
Posted by wayne husbands 1 year, 9 months ago

  • 6
Posted by wayne husbands 1 year, 9 months ago
since WE are so concerned about the economy, and think that the general strike could be detrimental,why not boycott LIME?

  • 1
Posted by wayne husbands 1 year, 9 months ago
Please note... the union is and was ready and willing to negotiate.its the big wigs at lime and their elitist supporters{nation news} that are the irresponsible parties here

  • 2
Posted by Bim Bum 1 year, 9 months ago
The 97 are no doubt Glad
to be rid of LIME
-and Lime equally Glad
to be rid of them!
I see no problem for either side, do you??

However, the Union is missing out on their DUES and that, dear fellow reader, is the crux of this problem!
Union is suffering cash-flow problems like all other businesses (and the Union IS a business)

  • 1
Posted by wayne husbands 1 year, 9 months ago
@sarah lane, if there are already employed,can we safely say that there's no unemployment issue in the island. A package may sound good,but may not be so good in the long run,"a flying fish every day is better than a fish steak every week".Lime needs to be honest about what is the real problem here if any, and deal with such on an individual basis.the campaign that you appears to be involved in looks like you are priviledge to inside information,or that you are subjected to benefit from this mass layoff. Whichever it is, we can better understand your position ,if you are clearer in your delivery. you will not gain any credibility by, standing on the fence]

  • 0
Posted by wayne husbands 1 year, 9 months ago
@JOHN DASIVLA. How can you say the union not listening,when lime ain't talking? i made a previous response to/about your comment and the nation choose to censor it, i wonder if you may be in the same nieghbourhood?

  • 0

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