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NUPW to push for pay raise

SHAWN CUMBERBATCH, [email protected]

NUPW to push for pay raise

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The National Union of Public Workers (NUPW) will push for an immediate salary increase for its members after the next Government is elected on Thursday.

It will also lobby for the appointment of all temporary or acting public sector workers who have been on the job continuously for more than three years, without “having to go through a selection process”.

The NUPW detailed these and other reforms in a 24-page Workers’ Manifesto. It said the initiative was part of a plan to form a registered non-profit organisation called the Barbados Social and Economic Reform Movement (SERM).

NUPW president Akanni McDowall said the manifesto was “a culmination of the union’s beliefs and intentions on what should be delivered to the workers of Barbados”.

“The document is designed to give the incoming Government and the people of Barbados a sense of what is important to us as a union. It outlines the strategies that should be taken in order to make the workers of Barbados comfortable,” he added.

Other proposals included introducing a work permit appeal system; establishing a regime for regularly servicing of Government buildings; tracking prices independently and adjusting them annually; reducing taxation and adopting more effective revenue collection measures; and introducing a Contractor General to oversee large procurement and supervise sales of major Government assets.

This was in addition to reviewing the Central Bank’s structure to insulate it from “undue political influence”; amalgamate state financial agencies to form a development bank; and reform the Senate and Public Accounts Committee and the Auditor General’s Department.

The NUPW also wants the introduction of an anti-corruption apparatus; a retention of capital punishment for specific crimes; introduction of a lay magistracy; and a more independent police complaints body.

It said it “does not believe it is necessary for it to promote the formation of a political party or to align itself, unequivocally, with an existing one”.

However, it said: “Given the present unsatisfactory state of the main pillars of the economy except tourism . . . as well as the noticeable decay on social and political landscapes, the [NUPW] has decided to be in the forefront of a national effort to fashion a new economic, social and political development order. (SC)