Several Trade Unions have pledged their support for each other and will be staging a massive march in the capital city come this Friday August 12.
At a press conference this morning, representatives from each of the country’s trade unions, including the Prison Officers Association, Fire Association, the Nursing Association, Communications Workers Union and the Public Services Association joined together with JTUM Leader Ancel Roget to explain that they will be marching against the government’s 4% wage negotiation offer, which they say is simply not enough for workers to maintain themselves and support their families.
According to Trinidad and Tobago Registered Nurses Association (TTRNA) second Vice President Letitia Cox, her union will be “out and strong” to represent nurses on Friday as many of them are facing the possibility of not having their contracts renewed.
She said, “ We will be marching against that because right now the wards are short staffed and we’re not dealing with any fake gratitude because they were clapping and handing around biscuits…and right now when we need the staff, they telling them they’re not renewing any contracts.”
Fire Association President Leo Ramkissoon also pledged his officers’ support as he said they have been working for close to nine years without any salary adjustments.
He said, “Our retirees are bound to suffer immensely if we even think about accepting what is offered on the table. Our officers are unable to approach any institution to afford a home or to even exist based on the cost of living.”
Meantime Prison Officers Association President Cerron Richards, who also pledged support said that priority remains an issue yet to be addressed in T&T. As he made a call for officers of all of the country’s protective services to unite for the cause, Richards said “Let us not be divided…we are all in the same class, we are in the working class, impoverished and we are destined to be further impoverished by a State that is negligent.”
Communication Workers Union President Clyde Elder also pledged support for Friday’s march. He also sent a warning message for his WASA colleagues:
He said, “What they are going to do to you, they have done to us at TSTT and they have done at Petrotrin…so if you feel not coming to the march will mean your job will be saved, because there are some of you close to a manager or a politician, that if you don’t show yourself on tv, they wouldn’t see you and you would get saved, you first getting buss throat.”
The Postal Workers Union, Bankers and Insurance General Workers Union, Contractors and General Workers Union, the Port Authority Workers Union and several others have also expressed their support for the march.
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