BWU threatens to shame union-busting companies

The Barbados Workers’ Union (BWU) is accusing some local companies of blatantly engaging in union busting, a practice that the union said it did not intend to take lightly.

And not only has the BWU threatened to name and shame those companies if the practice continues, General Secretary Toni Moore said members will be encouraged to boycott such businesses.

“We have been experiencing a couple companies, one most blatant, that has been engaging in union busting techniques in 2017 in Barbados,” Moore said today at a news conference to announce the union’s 76 annual delegates conference scheduled for August 26 and September 2 at Solidarity House.

“Believe it or not we still have to be dealing with the age-old challenge of some companies refusing the union recognition, refusing any attempt by the union to speak on behalf of people who are registered members of this union, refusing any attempts by the Ministry of Labour to conciliate. And so it is our intention to expose these challenges to our conference and to take decisions up to, and including, a national promotion for boycott of our members from purchasing from that company.

“We cannot have a situation where the union knows that these kinds of situations are taking place and would not expose it to the public. Barbados needs job creation, but more important than simply the creation of jobs is the union’s emphasis for the creation of decent work opportunities. And decent work opportunities cannot deny any citizen, any worker his or her right to union representation,” she argued.

The union leader revealed that one company had called in the police three weeks ago after a union representative had made an attempt at engagement.

Such behaviour provokes militancy by the labour movement, she suggested.

“We recognize that while people will want to suggest that the militants of the union and certain approaches of the union are no longer necessary, we recognize that we cannot behave in the same old way to all situations. But if people are bringing old tactics and schemes in our labour market interaction then we must be able to confront these in the way that we have always confronted them,” Moore said.

In response to suggestions that the union may have given up the fight against Sandy Lane and the Royal Shop, Moore said it was a matter of “perspective and understanding”.

“Those matters were really taken outside of the scope of the union and are being dealt with through a mediation process with the Ministry of Labour.

“We are satisfied that within the context, workers went out on strike and after the strike we were brought into a situation where the concerns of those workers were to be addressed by mediation panels that were established,” she explained.

In late 2015 the BWU was engaged in a contentious pay dispute with Sandy Lane, which started after the five-diamond west coast hotel ended its membership in the Barbados Hotel and Tourism Association after the association agreed to an eight per cent pay rise over three years, for hotel workers.

Upset employees said at the time that Sandy Lane had refused to pay the increase, arguing that the workers had been given a good quality living and a pension plan.

The matter was referred to the Prime Minister.

As far back as 2008, the Royal Shop fired a worker for refusing to be transferred to the store’s Bridgetown Port location. Twelve others who walked off the job in solidarity were also fired.

12 Responses to BWU threatens to shame union-busting companies

  1. Saga Boy August 17, 2017 at 11:10 pm

    Well well well! So the honeymoon period is over after that famous march? So you walked hand in hand with employers like Automotive Art and others whose staff is not unionized and you start to complain already? Why you were just calling on bro Herbert to continue paying union dues?

  2. Zeus August 17, 2017 at 11:18 pm

    Unbelievable…i am lost for words

  3. Ali Baba
    Ali Baba August 17, 2017 at 11:34 pm


  4. hcalndre August 18, 2017 at 1:22 am

    The firing of the Royal Shop and Sandy Lane employees should blame themselves and the leader of the union at that time because union members were of the opinion that they could just abandon/walk off the job like that. Where were the Shop Stewards? Then you hear of calling out Broad St. and Swan St. along with some racist talk, all was left for the Union to do was to beg for their jobs. The companies that are identified as union busters need picketing in front and around their businesses on the busiest days of the week and encourage the people not to buy their products or spend their money with them. Many bajans seem to be anti union so it maybe hard to get that message through. Some business places that pay their workers well or even better as non union workers.

  5. Alex Alleyne August 18, 2017 at 4:14 am

    You cant do nothing……..period.

  6. jrsmith August 18, 2017 at 4:42 am

    This is why our masses in barbados is under control… Toni Moore is my bajan favorite person of the decade ….I must keep reminding her , be careful how she steps and make sure she is always alert , do not trust a lot of party animals ,they would sell her down the river , she must always make sure she is in control and not only be managing, beware of bajan politicians …………..

    My take over this matter , dear lady , you are picking a fight with the wrong people dont make this an issue, this is democracy … What our people in barbados need (is to control our politicians )… they are totally out of order they need to be reined in ,, the behavior of our politicians in barbados have our black masses scared and frighten of them and the people who control barbados…….
    All bajan people do is cast a vote for they party of choice just securing the politicians jobs , a bunch of people who cannot tick a box on what they have done for the black masses in barbados in 9 years other than , shame our country , lie to the people , destroy our economy, the only thing they haven’t tax is going to the toilet, be rude to our people and dont give two hoots about anyone but themselves…………………………………………………..
    I would like our bajan people to be able to have they democracy back, have barbados back from our politicians, we must not allow them to hold our people in ……. ( lock down )… ever again we need an act of parliament namely so the(Accountability Act 2017 )
    which automatically give the voters the right to use the same votes which put the (MPs) in office to remove them if they are not working for and on behalf of the people.. ……………………….
    How else would you remove the failure we have for the past 9 years… If the present lot win again we are finish as a nation , worst than Greece , Greece have the EU we have no one to bail us out…….

    • hcalndre August 18, 2017 at 12:10 pm

      @jrsmith, you seem to forgot the Solid waste tax which last for a short time, toilet tax with a different name.

  7. Sherlock Holmes. August 18, 2017 at 6:58 am

    This isn’t only ironic it is also very moronic . I cannot believe what i am hearing i thought you and your comrades had just formed a match made in heaven with the private sector. Toni Moore take my advice just shut to hell up you are all over the place with your rhetoric. You are now an apparent expert on the crime situation which i will not chide you too much for as crime is a national problem, but to me you are craving too much attention and losing focus on what you should be really concerned with.Take a deep breath and settle yourself.

  8. Patrick August 18, 2017 at 10:40 am

    I knew that divorce was coming, That union and employers march was a marriage of convenience.
    Once the objectives were achieved (attempt to bring down a democratically elected government) they will be back to their separate position, not even a good honeymoon.

    Toni Moore, start by getting the staff at Automotive Arts unionised who were given the day with pay to march.
    I wish you luck, just remember what the PM said about the lion.

  9. hcalndre August 18, 2017 at 12:15 pm

    I remember a few things he said about the lion, his favorite beast, you remember when he refer to himself as a sleeping lion.

  10. Jennifer August 18, 2017 at 12:29 pm

    This whole union gibberish threats is just that, nothing of essence being said. You can only replace a lion or challenge a lion if you are a bigger lion. This people are like that mouse being afraid although they are really an elephant who known not its power. When they boycott – where will they go to shop????? this people have not a pot to pi$$ in and with tin cup in hand to those that hate them. Whenever you get a pot/stores then you can talk about boycott. This people will only go back to the masters stores like puppy dogs. And most of them Indian stores is not unionized either, so no point. Then you got another snare which is that this people are a divided set of……………… so if some boycott the others will go in and shop with a smile. And naming will not make a difference to this people either. Don’t bother woman just hush.

  11. August 18, 2017 at 2:57 pm

    #NameandShame #Simple


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