Back to work

Retrenched workers have been rehired – Jones

Many of the public workers laid off in 2014 as part of Government’s austerity programme are now back in the public service, claims Minister of Education Ronald Jones.

In defending the decision to restore the ten per cent which was cut from the salaries of parliamentarians and senior Government officials, Jones Tuesday admitted that the 3,000 public workers who had been sent home as Government moved to reduce the size of the civil service had taken a major blow.

However, he said many of them have been re-employed, although he sought to make it clear the numbers were not back to pre-2014 levels.

“There were people who took a 100 per cent cut in relation to having been severed from their various jobs . . .  and I am fully aware that many of them are now back in the civil service,” the minister told his legislative colleagues.

“I congratulate them and all those who made that possible for them to return as vacancies occur, but the [employment] ceiling [has] not being increased in any significant numbers.”

The restitution means Jones and most of his Cabinet colleagues will receive just short of $17,000 a month, inclusive of allowances, according to the Ministers and Parliamentary Secretaries (Remuneration and Allowances) Order 2016 tabled in Parliament by Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler in April last year. Minister of Tourism Richard Sealy, who is the de facto Deputy Prime Minister, will receive in excess of $20,000 per month, while Prime Minister Freundel Stuart’s salary increases to $203,175.60 ($16,931.30 per month), along with a travel allowance of $54,838.44 ($4,569.87 per month) and official car and residence.

Yet Jones suggested it was difficult to function effectively since the cut, insisting elected representatives were still being called upon to meet the needs of constituents on a reduced salary.

“We surrendered ten per cent of our salary, but the demands still remain the same, or more,” he said.

“I am not here to eat alone. I am here to make it possible that all of us in this country will eat, all of us in this country can share in whatever this country provides.”

Like his fellow ruling Democratic Labour Party representatives, Jones attacked the Opposition Barbados Labour Party (BLP) for walking out of Parliament in protest of the restitution, accusing the BLP of giving the impression that parliamentarians were handing themselves a pay rise.

“All I would be receiving once this resolution passes today is a restoration of my salary to what it was some 39 months previously. There is no back pay on this . . . . It does not go back. It was freely given up,” he said.

“This is possibly one of the saddest days of my life.” 

15 Responses to Back to work

  1. Richard Johnston January 26, 2017 at 1:20 am

    Barbados could save a lot of money by cutting in half the number of MPs. A single New York city councilperson represents more people than the population of Barbados, and the city’s budget is Bds$150 billion/year.

    Reply
  2. Hal Austin January 26, 2017 at 5:45 am

    Spot on Richard. Being an MP should be voluntary. Part time politicians should not get salaries, certainly not defined benefit pensions. This is crazy.
    Most of our lawyers have other businesses, lawyers, doctors, business people. They are not fulltime.

    Reply
    • Carson C Cadogan January 26, 2017 at 9:57 am

      Rubbish.

      I dont why you people like to constantly compare Barbados with huge Metropolitan countries.

      I feel sorry for you all not being able to see the difference.

      Reply
      • Richard Johnston January 26, 2017 at 11:46 am

        CC, I am merely stating that a NYC councilperson adequately serves as many people as the population of Barbados, and their pay is about twice that of a Bajan MP. Do the math. Do you get paid a full salary for gathering with your colleagues most (but not all) Tuesdays? There seems to be a code of silence in Barbados where nobody talks about feather-bedded government employees because everybody’s got a relative in that category.

        Reply
      • hcalndre January 26, 2017 at 11:38 pm

        @Carson C Cadogan, you should feel sorry for the people of barbados and there`s no comparison what so ever but as R J said that with the small population that barbados has and the amount of elected politicians they are, where some districts have about 75 persons. NYC police probably has a larger budget than barbados, I agree that there should reduce the number of MPs by 50% that would save the taxpayers some burden of paying those salaries and pensions.

        Reply
    • Donild Trimp January 26, 2017 at 12:49 pm

      Hal Austin, you surely would not want to go that route.

      You will end up with people like the late “Gearbox” and “Ding-Ding” becoming MP’s.

      Reply
      • Richard Johnston January 26, 2017 at 12:50 pm

        What about reducing the number by half?

        Reply
  3. Alex Alleyne January 26, 2017 at 8:09 am

    Jones said “We surrendered ten percent of our salary, but the demands still remain the same or more”. When an employer lay-off staff / job cuts, the employees that’s remain on the job are asked and expected to do twice as much work for the same pay,,,,,,or be fired.
    What is your point Minister Jones ??????. Most of us out here cannot make it on the chicken-feed (chump-change) we get per week and you guys are “cleaning-up” while the Country going DOWN HILL. From way back when , the call was to get the rid of some of the Ministers, Too Many In Bim just collecting a fat pay cheque

    Reply
    • Carson C Cadogan January 26, 2017 at 9:58 am

      You would not be saying this if all the Ministers were white people.

      Reply
      • Gabby January 26, 2017 at 10:22 am

        Hey Carson ..why r u playing the race card ,it’s all about being fair to the public workers who haven’t seen a pay raise in how years

        Reply
    • hcalndre January 26, 2017 at 11:53 pm

      @A A. Can you imagine Jones said that they need the money retuned to them because they have to pull their pockets and give or pay bills for the people and that`s one of the reasons that they need the money. They also said that their life style is not the same when most of them never had 2 pennies to rub together before, what about the workers and their families they sent home and not a dime coming from anywhere? What a set of heartless people.

      Reply
  4. Alex Alleyne January 26, 2017 at 12:46 pm

    White people in BIM don’t have to run for political office, they just control the politicians from their board rooms.
    Butt CC is that the best you can do ? . ,,,, Cheap shot . Most of us are not partisan , so we see the facts and tell it .

    Reply
  5. Envious January 26, 2017 at 7:14 pm

    If there was no salary attached to being a member of Parliament none of them would be there. That should make lots of you happy to have the county run by the big business men at least no hunger boy or girl from your village will be given those big bucks. They would always be hungry boys like the rest of us where they belong. How envious and stupid can you be

    Reply
  6. David Hall January 26, 2017 at 8:52 pm

    Who Jones trying to fool? I am convinced that the money ministers keep throwing behind special projects , some woefully ill times and executed are merely designed to put money in the pockets of party supporters.

    Reply
  7. hcalndre January 27, 2017 at 12:03 am

    A friend had said to me that barbados would be better off today if the whites were running the country. Look at who is in charge now are living big because they never knew that kind of living before.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *