While the BCCI and the PUP are concerned with the increase in the cost of living, the National Trade Union Congress of Belize is supporting the SSB’s bid for contributions to increase. In a letter dated May 23, NTUCB President Floyd Neal writes to the CEO of SSB, Dr. Colin Young quote, “NTUCB hopes the legislative amendments to give effect to these adjustments can be approved before year’s end to allow implementation as soon as possible to stave off equilibrium and thus assure the sustainability of the scheme.” End of quote. Love News spoke to Chandra Nisbet Cansino, General Manager of Corporate Customer Relation Services at SSB.
Chandra Nisbet Cansino, General Manager of Corporate Customer Relation Services, SSB: “Yes we’ve received responses from both the chamber, the business community as well as the National Trade Union Congress of Belize which represents all the unions registered under that umbrella and while both of them agree that the reform must indeed take place they differ as to their recommendations and their suggestions as to how it should take place. So Social Security’s official position at this time is to more than likely go back to the negotiating table with both of them- well the tripartite bodies because that also includes the Government of Belize- so that we could agree on a way forward.”
Reporter: How soon would the SSB want to convert this proposal into a unanimous decision taking into consideration the financial constraints, the difficulties of the fund?
Chandra Nisbet Cansino, General Manager of Corporate Customer Relation Services, SSB:“We were hoping to complete our consultations and our recommendations by the end of this year and it seems that we would be meeting that deadline. Then of course the cabinet would have to deliberate and move forward from there depending on what their decision is.”
Reporter: Last week I believe the SSB met with the opposition leader John Briceno and other members of his parties regarding the proposal, talk to us about how that went.
Chandra Nisbet Cansino, General Manager of Corporate Customer Relation Services, SSB: “Yes we made the presentation to the opposition and several of their members, the discussion was very professional and respectable. In attendance were our CEO Dr.Colin Young as well as the chairman of the Social Security Board Mr.Doug Singh and again the general consensus is that there is the need for reform. Again we have not received official response from the opposition but it the timing and the strategy as to how the reform will be implemented is still on the table and we will hopefully be meeting with all of the partners again to be able to draft a final way going forward.”
After consultations conclude, the SSB will present the proposal to the Minister and then the Minister will present it to Cabinet before Cabinet takes it to Parliament.