Byer-Suckoo chided for benefits comment

The island’s largest public sector trade union is questioning the wisdom in making it difficult for people who lose their jobs to receive unemployment benefits.

Responding to a comment made Tuesday by Minister of Labour Dr Esther Byer-Suckoo that unemployed individuals who refuse job placements and counselling from the National Employment Bureau (NEB) should have their unemployment benefits discontinued, the National Union of Public Workers (NUPW) said Government must recognize that any money paid in unemployment benefits would have been contributed by the very people who were seeking support, while they were still employed.

NUPW President Akanni McDowall said while people should be encouraged to find work, a hardline approach was not the way to go.

“It may not necessarily be the right decision to make it difficult for workers to benefit from funds they would have contributed over the years. I think what we would have to do is to try and encourage unemployed persons to do what is right and secure a job on their own initiative. I do not think that Government should try to adopt a hard stance against the workers,” McDowall said.

Byer-Suckoo had told a stakeholders’ seminar at Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre that the law barred anyone who refused counselling from having their forms stamped, thus denying them benefits.

She also said no one was entitled to 26 weeks’ unemployment benefits, and that people were abusing the system by refusing opportunities for interviews because their unemployment benefits had ‘not yet run out, they still have several weeks to go’.

However, General Secretary of the Unity Workers Union (UWU) Caswell Franklyn reacted with disdain, saying the minister did not have a clue what was going on.

“The minister just opens her mouth and talk for the sake of talking. She does not understand what is really happening in Barbados. The maximum unemployment benefit a retrenched worker can get from the National Insurance Scheme is $2,400 a month. In such a case if the NEB locates a job for $1,200 a month the worker would hardly take up such a placement. Surely the worker would hardly give up $2,400 a month for 26 weeks, for a job that pays $1,200 a month,” Franklyn said.

In her address to the stakeholders, Byer-Suckoo had said the cry of some individuals for the social and development agency to be relocated to a more central area had not fallen on deaf ears.

In April 2012, the NEB was moved to the Warrens Office Complex after the old NIS building on Fairchild Street, The City became unsuitable.

However, unemployed individuals who have to conduct business with the Government agency have been complaining about having to travel between the NIS on Culloden Road in Collymore Rock and the NEB offices in Warrens

While the minister said Government was in search of a “suitable and affordable” venue at which to relocate the unit, Franklyn charged Byer-Suckoo had no one to blame but herself.

He said both divisions were to have been housed at the E Humphrey Walcott building at the corner of Culloden Road and Collymore Rock, St Michael, but Byer-Suckoo had separated them, creating further financial hardship for retrenched workers.

“You now have unemployed people who do not have the money to pay bus fares from Lower Collymore Rock to Warrens to have their claims fully processed . . . . Byer-Suckoo does not understand the hardship she has created by separating the NEB personnel and the NIS personnel.

“This Government has gone and restored the ten per cent that they had deducted from their salaries and people who have to live without a salary they want to deny them access to funds they had contributed over the years,” Franklyn contended. 

26 Responses to Byer-Suckoo chided for benefits comment

  1. Sunshine Sunny Shine May 25, 2017 at 3:41 am

    I am convinced more than ever that Esther Byer Suckoo is complete goat who needs her stake pull to shyte up. Something got to be wrong with the heads of these nitwit DLP nuts. Not a day does not go by that you do not read something stupid done, being done, or about to get done by these bunch antiblackbajan oppressors.

    Reply
    • jennifer May 25, 2017 at 11:19 am

      SSS – THATS right. The shoe is the problem.

      Reply
  2. Ali Baba
    Ali Baba May 25, 2017 at 4:58 am

    WHAT JOB PLACEMENTS & COUNSELLING YOU TALKING ABOUT? COUNSELLING GINE BRING BACK DE PEOPLE JOBS………THE DEMONIC LYING PARTY IS EQUAL TO PLAGUES THAT MAKES HUMAN LIFE AS MISERABLE AS POSSIBLE. THEY ARE HELL BENT ON DESTROYING PEOPLE LIVES IN EVERY FORM AN FASHION, FINANCIALLY, SOCIALLY, MENTALLY, PHYSICALLY, ETC.ETC. EVERY WHERE!! EVERYWHERE!!!! DEM TRYING TO FIND OR COME UP WITH WAYS TO TAKE BACK EVERYTHING, THESE SCRUFF OF THE EARTH B!TCHES FA SLAVES IN MASSA SLAVE HOUSE. I WAS MADE REDUNDANT IN 2014 AFTER 16 YEARS, APPOINTED 11 ….AND U HAVE SE GALL TO TALK ABOUT JOB PLACEMENT A COUNSELLING!!! THE DEMONIC LYING PARTY NEEDS COUNSELLING, TO STOP DOING THE WICKED NASTINESS TO THE MASSES OF THIS COUNTRY…..INEPT MORONS.

    Reply
    • Shurland Prince
      Shurland Prince May 25, 2017 at 5:04 am

      No wonder why you so bitter!!! You full of to much anger because of being made redundant!!! There is no need for any name calling.

      Reply
    • Ali Baba
      Ali Baba May 25, 2017 at 5:14 am

      Shurland Prince GOODMORNING SIR, NO!! I’M NOT BITTER, BUT RATHER THE TRUTH I’M SPEAKING, AND SOME PEOPLE CAN’T HANDEL THE TRUTH…..TELL ME WHERE U SEE BITTERNESS IN WHAT I WROTE?

      Reply
    • Scarfeeze Millan
      Scarfeeze Millan May 25, 2017 at 6:08 am

      What got me is I remember bout 5 yrs ago is get a talk bout if you don’t got certificates you don’t jobs you know how much employers act offa this she did plunging this working sector for quite sometime and it irritates me the more this woman talks a bunch of roll and then does run and bring some other input that guin cause chaos to hide the next she is such a sloppy minster why is she in cabinet is my question she does nothing at all in no helpful or proposing way

      Reply
    • Eddy Murray
      Eddy Murray May 25, 2017 at 7:04 am

      If you have a circus what you all expect to be in it not clowns

      Reply
  3. Alwin Ellis
    Alwin Ellis May 25, 2017 at 5:13 am

    Esther is being the typical clueless DLP Minister

    Reply
  4. Shotta Boss
    Shotta Boss May 25, 2017 at 5:40 am

    I had the opportunity of experiencing it and it’s not easy she is just blinded as bajans would say She got motor car so she don’t know shit them don’t care about anything or anyone especially she a minister of labor that can’t even fight for d rights of ppl or get things done or do pass eg. I employers continue to do as they like Eg unemployed men Bien sent to prison because they are unable to pay child maintenance eg. Ppl Bien unfairly treated by her own department because her department takes the employer side in cases

    Reply
  5. Lauraine Clarke
    Lauraine Clarke May 25, 2017 at 6:22 am

    I don’t know why she is given a ministry that she don’t understand,she making it hard for people at every turn,she need to go.

    Reply
  6. Tamiya Wasnice Best
    Tamiya Wasnice Best May 25, 2017 at 6:26 am

    This woman has nothing good to say at no time…….take multiple seats and don’t move do. STUPID

    Reply
  7. Tsa Harris
    Tsa Harris May 25, 2017 at 6:42 am

    Talking bare ****** woman discontinued what stupse..

    Reply
  8. Charles Atkins
    Charles Atkins May 25, 2017 at 6:45 am

    Sing the chorus with me everyone:
    I qualify; I got pension fuh life, I got pension fuh life.
    Tell them idiots I don’t give a damm, I got pension fuh life.
    Wunna going drop dead before, wunna qualify; but I got, PENSION FUH LIFE.

    Reply
  9. Mariam Makeba
    Mariam Makeba May 25, 2017 at 7:00 am

    Please tell me if the dear minister has the qualifications to be in that position. Well she too should be qualified like the person who is cooking peas and rice. She is a qualifed doc, why she ain’t in health?

    Reply
    • Rishona Graham
      Rishona Graham May 25, 2017 at 7:15 am

      Why you feel she ain’t in health the woman looking for money .

      Reply
  10. Dave D. Thompson
    Dave D. Thompson May 25, 2017 at 7:10 am

    This minister and this gov on the whole are anti worker and if ur anti worker ur anti people … They seem to enjoy making life as hard as possible for bajans .. Smh

    Reply
  11. Daisy Suzanne King
    Daisy Suzanne King May 25, 2017 at 7:11 am

    She lost an election and get a Ministry and don’t have a clue. People in Barbados Suffering and every night she on tv blowing hot air. The DLP must go in 2018 if this country is to ever prosper again. BLP Team to rebuild.

    Reply
  12. Kaiser Sose
    Kaiser Sose May 25, 2017 at 7:21 am

    TYPICAL DLP SLUG, you are going to need unemployment soon when the people vote you alls feckless arses out of power. Karma is coming soon

    Reply
  13. Randolph May 25, 2017 at 10:09 am

    She is on tv every night.I wonder if she thinks she can win a seat again.Her political life is coming to an end.

    Reply
  14. Ossie Moore May 25, 2017 at 11:13 am

    Lord mek peace! De whole lot o’ duh hear ’bout retraining and getting new information technology and skills behind it. “But No”! it too hard to tek de change. It’s like saying “Wha Kim you talking ’bout”! Watch and see Guyanese Bajans will jump pun dah”!

    Reply
  15. Sunshine Sunny Shine May 25, 2017 at 11:56 am

    Byer Suckoo, why don’t make it far more difficult for government ministers to pull of kick back scam by put in place tighter controls? You idiots are doing everything in your power to oppress the masses while you keep channels open for you to continue to do your exploitative shyte. Wicked bunch of so in sos ya here! Wicked is tail hole.

    Reply
  16. Sheron Inniss May 25, 2017 at 12:23 pm

    Wuh loss, the minister at a loss. Reel and come again or stop taking NIS out of peoples’ money. It is not there for the government of the day to do what they feel like.

    Reply
  17. Lorenzo May 25, 2017 at 6:07 pm

    Minister Suckoo lost her seat because the people realise she talks a lot of nonsense and the PM give her back a ministry,for what,the lady is a failure in every ministry she was in.She needs to stay off the tv along with Donville Inniss,Stephen Lashley and Maxine McClean who nobody voted for.

    Reply
  18. Donild Trimp May 25, 2017 at 8:00 pm

    WAIT, WAIT a minute, you entitlement lot.

    @jennifer – you of all people should be supporting this statement, people of Barbados please tell me what is wrong with the following statement ;

    “unemployed individuals who refuse job placement ————————-should have their unemployment benefits discontinued”

    Please tell me what is wrong with the Minister’s statement above?

    The entitlement mentality in Barbados must be eradicated and if it is not eradicated with haste, Barbados will reach the point of no return – the point where it will be a failed state.

    All you lazy unemployed folks who refuse a job placement, I am telling you here and now, get off your lazy asses and stop depending on the Government for a handout.

    Note with clarity what I stated above – all you lazy folks who refuse a job placement.

    The entitlement mentality must be eradicated.

    Reply
  19. Jennifer May 25, 2017 at 9:45 pm

    @Donild Trimp – “The maximum unemployment benefit a retrenched worker can get from the National Insurance Scheme is $2,400 a month. In such a case if the NEB locates a job for $1,200 a month the worker would hardly take up such a placement” Among other things.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    That’s why. This is UNDEREMPLOYMENT. The same way that people pay their dues/contributions faithfully they should get compensation as needed and when needed. This is not something for nothing. We got a set of people around here getting millions in tax breaks, Non payment of tax, concessions and a lot of shyte and no one aint calling that out. This is so sad that in this day and age this people still cannot cut that colonial umbilical cord and set our own standards etc, All this that she is talking is regurgitated puke from the UK. That ENTITLEMENT lot was home for many years refusing to work in the name of having children, hurt back etc. And statistics showed that more white were home doing this than any other race. But when it is blacks your not entitled to a thing but your head and guts. And even that they want to take now. Until we can see the strong hold that this 1% got on this people nothing will change.

    Reply
  20. Obserer May 25, 2017 at 10:38 pm

    I agree with your statement Mr. Trimp and with the minister. A twenty-six weeks unemployment benefit is excellent and to ask an unemployed person to show he or she is actively looking for employment, seems reasonable. The suggested policy is very similar to what happens in other countries that are a far richer than Barbados. It does not matter which party is in power this will become the law as the government seeks to cut the fat out of the economy and streamline policies.

    Mr. McDowall your suggestion does not offer a solution and and maintains the status quo. I hope you are not thinking of industrial action over this. This is why unions get a bad name and are considered a barrier to progress.

    I am surprised at the negative comments about the minister rather than discussing her proposal. Come on Barbadians you can do better than that.

    Reply

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