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Still no numbers

National Union of Public Workers (NUPW) general secretary Dennis Clarke says the union does not know the actual number of workers sent home to date from the Civil Service.

This comes despite reports from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) that at the end of January, 1,800 jobs had been shed and a further 1,200 would be gone by the end of March.

“[We] are not hearing that figure from Government. When we hear [numbers] like that, it is painful to accept . . . but the reality is that we know people are going, and they are going at different stages, depending on the Personnel Administration Department, [which] is dealing with it,” Clarke said tonight after meeting with NUPW shop stewards at the union’s Dalkeith headquarters.

Regarding the much talked about list of persons who would be sent home from the Public Service, the NUPW head noted that none of the unions, the Barbados Workers’ Union included, had received such a document with respect to the layoffs.

“One would have to understand the structure of the Public Service and the workload involved in moving and shifting workers in the Public Service. I am not making any excuses for them, because we should have had the list as promised; but then one can understand what it is to sit down and look at the last-in first-out principle in the Public Service.

“For those who are criticizing the unions about the last-in first-out principle, they need to get up and read the protocol and see what it states. It is not something that the NUPW manufactured. It is written there . . . . The employers, the Government and the unions came up with this understanding in 1991 and the put in into the protocol and therefore government has to act under the protocol,” he stated.

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