Tobago’s public servants to intensify protest action

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Hayden Duke, PSA industrial relations officer, Tobago region. –

Tobago’s public servants are expected to intensify their protest action against the Government’s two per cent wage offer sometime this week, PSA industrial relations officer, Tobago region, Hayden Duke, said on Saturday.

On Friday, hundreds of workers, led by the heads of their respective unions, took to the streets of Port of Spain to demand that the Chief Personnel Officer Dr Daryl Dindial revisit his counterproposal of two per cent for the period 2014-2021.

But Tobago’s public servants were not physically present at the march, which began at Memorial Park and ended at the Central Bank, Independence Square, Port of Spain.

However, they did support their Trinidad counterparts by wearing black to their respective places of work.

Describing the response as “reasonable,” Duke told Sunday Newsday the public servants are expected to heighten their actions this week. But he declined to give details.

Tobago has close to 4,000 public servants employed with the Tobago House of Assembly.

“There is further action that is going to be taken very soon. It could be as close as Monday,” he said.

Duke said he plans to confer with PSA president Leroy Baptiste before making any move.

“He must be kept in the loop as to what is happening before we go further because it’s one PSA. Tobago would have supported our Trinidad colleagues yesterday (Friday) and we know our Trinidad colleagues will support any action that Tobago has taken as well.

So certainly there will be further action.”

Dindial said on Wednesday he is willing to meet with the trade union leaders next month.

Last Sunday, on his return from Guyana, the Prime Minister urged public servants to be patient.

Dr Rowley said despite the frustration they may feel, they should consider that there were no job cuts throughout the two years of the pandemic.

He added while the Government would have liked to have satisfied the requests of the trade unions, they were careful to balance any wage increase with public debt.

Union leaders have described the two per cent wage offer as an insult to public officers in TT.

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