CLICK PLAY FOR LIVE STREAMING || REFRESH YOUR BROWSER IF STREAM IS NOT LOADING

 
Listen Live On Our Live Stream or Tune To Our Frequencies: 88.3 FM | 88.9 FM | 94.7 FM | 95.1 FM | 98.1 FM | 98.5 FM

Evan Mose Hyde, President, Christian Workers Union

Impasse declared between CITCO and CWU

The impasse continues between the Christian Workers Union (CWU) and the Belize City Council while the union members are without a collective bargaining agreement (CBA). The union has been pushing Belize City Mayor Bernard Wagner to present a counter proposal on the CBA, but the Mayor has refused, saying he will not be doing any such negotiations prior to the municipal elections on March 3. Today the back forth continued as the CWU held a press conference in which President Evan Mose Hyde outlined the points of contention for union. CWU CBA 1 IN OUT President Hyde went on to tell the media that the Mayor had given the wrong impression to the public when he said that the union is pushing for a signed agreement prior to the elections. He went on to explain that there is lengthy process, all things considered, and that the waiting is denying the employees a fundamental right. CWU CBA 2 IN OUT While a halt has been placed on several plans due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Hyde says that cannot be an excuse in this matter. CWU CBA 3 IN OUT The current CBA was signed under the Darrel Bradley administration in 2018 and expires this year. Love News understands that the union has already informed the Ministry of Labour, and has formally written to the ministry and the Labour Commisioner with an outline of the union’s concerns./////

The impasse continues between the Christian Workers Union (CWU) and the Belize City Council while the union members are without a collective bargaining agreement (CBA).  The union has been pushing Belize City Mayor Bernard Wagner to present a counter proposal on the CBA, but the Mayor has refused, saying he will not be doing any such negotiations prior to the municipal elections on March 3.  Today the back forth continued as the CWU held a press conference in which President Evan Mose Hyde outlined the points of contention for union.

Evan Mose Hyde, President, Christian Workers Union

Evan Mose Hyde, President, Christian Workers Union: “We were informed early January that the Belize City Council would not be able to provide us with counter proposals on our new CBA before March 31, 2021 and we outlined in that press release why we felt and why we feel like that is an unacceptable response. We described the situation where we made our version of the proposals back in October of 2019 and that we have tried both formally and informally to inquire about when we could expect a response. The second matter of concern to us was the abrupt transfer of three of our reps without any prior notification or involvement from CWU. After our Chief Rep was transferred we asked for a meeting with Belize City Council so that we could express our concerns about how it was done and we lamented the lack of engagement, the lack of prior notice, the lack of input. So we were very disappointed obviously when in the aftermath of that, two more of our reps were transferred. So those are the two things that we have presented. We have asked our members to sign on to a letter to the Belize City Council informing them of our position. After seeing an interview that was conducted with the Mayor we feel that it is necessary to clear up what we perceive to be a mischaracterization of the issue that we have here.”

President Hyde went on to tell the media that the Mayor had given the wrong impression to the public when he said that the union is pushing for a signed agreement prior to the elections.  He went on to explain that there is lengthy process, all things considered, and that the waiting is denying the employees a fundamental right.

Evan Mose Hyde, President, Christian Workers Union: “We have a responsibility to all our members who we cannot gather in one meeting because of the pandemic restrictions so we have to have them understand clearly what it is we have a problem with and what is the nature of our dispute and also who we believe to be a critical stakeholder, the Belizean public here in Belize City, to understand again clearly what our contention is. The characterization of the CWU position that was described in the interview last Friday by the Mayor that this is an effort to do a last minute kind of extortion of the present administration so as to bind future administrations to create a signed CBA that then is handed off to whichever administration takes over City Hall after the upcoming municipal elections is extremely inaccurate. The standard operating procedure in bargaining is one side presents what it would like to have in its agreement with the employer and then the employer simply looks through that, identifies those things which they don’t have a problem with except many of these are things which are simply echoing what is presently legislated in the Labor Law. So a lot of this is what you’d call just routine; you take off, you accept. Now there are areas where in all bargaining and negotiations that the other side identifies that they have a problem with and in that counterproposal they simply identify those things and then they propose a version of it which they are more favorable to and then we begin the process of negotiation. And that’s a back and forth, that’s a meeting, we set a schedule, we engage. So the process of presenting a proposal and getting a counter proposal is the equivalent of getting into the bargaining period and so to be denied a counter proposal is to be denied a standard right of a bargaining agent and its members to engage in respectful negotiations. We cannot begin to negotiate until we know what in our proposals you have a problem with.”

While a halt has been placed on several plans due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Hyde says that cannot be an excuse in this matter.

Evan Mose Hyde, President, Christian Workers Union : The fact that we are now fifteen months or sixteen months in this circling pattern waiting and waiting to get our counter proposals is absolutely unacceptable and in our view, we do not have an explanation for it. Our dispute is that it should not take so long for us to be engaged and for us to be respectfully joined in the process of a natural standard bargaining negotiation. 

The current CBA was signed under the Darrel Bradley administration in 2018 and expires this year.  Love News understands that the union has already informed the Ministry of Labour, and has formally written to the ministry and the Labour Commisioner with an outline of the union’s concerns.