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Layoffs begin


NATASHA BECKLES, [email protected]

Layoffs begin

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Several workers at the National Housing Corporation received letters ending their employment this morning.
The action appears to be part of the Government move to rein its burdensome fiscal deficit.
Those affected are from the customer service and accounts departments and general workers responsible for the maintenance of the housing units. Some of the dismissed workers received their letters from their various work sites including the Pine Depot around 8:30 a.m.
But Minister of Housing and Lands, Denis Kellman told the Nation that he was unaware of the exact number of those affected.
According to Kellman, whose office is based at the NHC, the statutory agency was being restructured to make it more efficient.
However, upset workers who were running between the NHC and the National Union of Public Workers claimed that the Government had broken its own rule by dismissing workers from the same household.
The Press is yet to get an official position from the Government about the plan layoffs of at least 3 000 workers scheduled to start today and conclude by the end of March.
NUPW general secretary Dennis Clarke said the dismissals had taken him by surprise since he thought there would be further discussion based on what the union had proposed to Government.
He said they had met two days ago with the NHC and were asking that workers with more than ten years’ service not be terminated because they were pensionable.
Clarke said the NUPW was prepared to fight the issue all the way to court.

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