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PM steps in

Eric Smith

PM steps in

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An eleventh-hour effort is on today to resolve the dispute at the National Conservation Commission (NCC) which threatens to disrupt the island’s industrial stability.
Prime Minister Freundel Stuart has summoned a meeting at Government Headquarters with the disputed parties, the NCC’s management and the two trade unions, the National Union of Public Workers (NUPW) and the Barbados Workers’ Union (BWU).
The meeting, scheduled to start at 10 a.m., is aimed at staving off strike action at the NCC and possibly other areas of the public sector following the failure by the NCC to meet certain requests and requirements of the unions.
The NCC has sent home nearly 200 of its workforce of about 900 as part of the retrenchment taking place in the public sector but the approach the environmental agency used has not met with the unions’ approval. They have insisted that the practice of “last in, first out” be applied at the NCC.
Earlier efforts to reach a resolution have failed despite meetings chaired by the Acting Chief Labour Officer Victor Felix and the Minister of Labour Senator Dr Esther Byer Suckoo, with Senator Maxine McClean filling in briefly for Byer Suckoo when she was abroad.