GPWU Attends Meeting With Prime Minister And DPA On “Contract” Workers 

On Tuesday, February 15, 2022, a delegation of the GPWU led by President, Brother Brian Grimes attended a meeting with Prime Minister, Hon. Dr. Keith Mitchell, and the Department of Public Administration (DPA), to discuss several burning issues affecting members but, primarily, the issue of contract workers.” 

The meeting which lasted for well over two hours, was cordial and frank and centered around the outstanding matter of Contract and Unregularized workers, many of whom are employed on various forms of contracts or without the benefit of any instrument of appointment whatsoever. The GPWU maintains that this group of workers is greatly disenfranchised and is heartened that both the Prime Minister and the DPA conveyed a deep acknowledgement and understanding of this problem

The Union raised the issue of workers being placed in prolonged or permanent actingsituations while the Estimates of Revenue and Expenditure for 2022, shows approximately three hundred (300) permanent, established unfilled positions, and noted that in most instances, these job functions and responsibilities are already carried out by qualified and skilled workers, both permanent and nonregularized

Head of the DPA, Permanent Secretary Rhonda Jones, outlined several of the initiatives and ongoing work by the DPA, in recognition that the problem of nonregularized workers in the Service must be fixed as a matter of priority

Both parties agreed on a number of goals to be achieved in the short term, which aims to bring some immediate relief to Contract Workers,with several others to be worked on in the medium to longer term, as both the DPA and the Union acknowledged that the matter of regularization will take some time

The Union is pleased to have secured a firm commitment from the Prime Minister that, cohorts of workers who have been consistently left out of systematic salary increases as bargained for by the Union, should receive, as an interim measure, a salary increase of 4% within the shortest possible time

The Union and DPA has committed to ongoing discussions and monthly meetings as both parties are desirous of working harmoniously to bring about resolution to the problem of contract work and unregularized workers

The GPWU remains optimistic about progress going forward to secure positive outcomes and benefits to workers