Anthony pleads with public sector workers
CASTRIES – St Lucia’s Prime Minister Dr Kenny Anthony has urged public sector workers to make sacrifices to preserve the jobs of their “fellow workers”, as government seeks to resolve a fiscal crisis facing the 31-month-old administration.
“We have said to the unions and the associations that government does not want or intend to retrench any workers unless it is placed in a position where it has no other option,” said Anthony in a radio and television broadcast last night.
Anthony, who is also the Minister of Finance, said it was a time for everyone to make sacrifices.
“The harsh truth is that growth in wages and salaries in the public service over the past ten years has not only been completely disconnected [from] the growth in our economy, but it has far outpaced growth in wages in the private sector,” Anthony told the nation.
He disclosed that between 1997 and 2013 public officers would have received an overall increase of 39.5 per cent in salaries and wages, while the salaries of ministers had remained unchanged since 1998.
Anthony also said that the only way to obtain a needed reduction in current expenditure and put the fiscal situation back on a viable path, was to make a cut in salaries and wages across the board.