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Workers congress supporting BUT

CTUSAB president Cedric Murrell

CTUSAB president Cedric Murrell

CTUSAB is throwing its support behind the Barbados Union of Teachers’ calls for a Teaching Services Commission to be set up.

Noting that the call for the commission had been made since the 1990s, President Cedric Murrell told the audience attending the opening ceremony of the BUT’s 39th Annual General Conference last night that despite being referred to as a “noble profession”, teachers could contend they were not “sufficiently recognised in accordance with that characterisation” and they were “not accorded the requisite benefits, privileges and commensurate pay for the job that you do”.

He added: “CTUSAB believes that security of tenure for teachers and other public officers is a necessary imperative if the matter of the professional status of these employees is to be addressed.

“In an era where teaching as a profession may not be attracting the best of our graduates coming out of the universities; this should send a clear signal to the authorities that the teaching profession is in need of urgent attention.

“The introduction of measures, such as a pay scale with the requisite relativities that encourages teachers to teach and no hanker after being administrators may certainly be a first step towards addressing this matter,” Murrell said.

The CTUSAB head also noted that in September 2011 “at the invitation of the Head of the Civil Service”, CTUSAB submitted a 58-page document with comments on the Public Service Act and subsequently submitted additional comments in October, but despite several reminders, they were “still to receive an invitation to a face-to-face meeting to discuss those comments and recommendations”.

“As it relates to conducting interviews to fill all posts within the Public Service, although we recognise that the Public Services Commission has a responsibility to act within the confines of the law, we however believe that the process of appointments could be expedited, if as we content; the wording of the law should not obligate a commission to interview each candidate who may meet the minimum requirements for an office,” he said.

The conference, which is being held at the Barbados Workers’ Union Solidarity House headquarters, ends tomorrow. (DS)

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