The Port of Belize employees have been protesting during their lunch hour for the past ten days and there hasn’t been any progress in settling the impasse between the employees and the company. As a matter of fact, the President of the Christian Workers Union, Evan Mose Hyde, says things have gotten worse with PBL as they are exploring the idea of having employees terminated on the basis of redundancy. Hyde believes that this represents union busting and victimization by PBL.
Evan Mose Hyde, President, Christian Workers Union: “No progress has been made. In fact there’s been a turn for the worst, the port is now despite the fact they have illegally taken away 10% out of our member’s salaries and we speak very confident on that they’ve taken it out without any signed permission and even though they proceeded with that since June 16th they have now decided that they need to add onto that reduction redundancy and termination and so they’re requesting the Labor Department to facilitate a process through which they can present their redundancy case and tell us who all will be terminated. As a response we have written to the International Labor Organization to register our position that this is a case of blatant victimization and union busting. That in the middle of a disputed action you are now introducing on top of that more cost to our members this time in their very employment and so it has certainly taken a turn for the worst for sure.”
Naim Borges, Love FM News: When will that meeting be held ?
Evan Mose Hyde, President, Christian Workers Union: “They are requesting the meeting from the Ministry of Labor, the Ministry of Labor has indicated that they will not be a part of that. There’s been back and forth, the port is insisting that that is what the Ministry of Labor is supposed to do. If the Ministry of Labor calls us to a meeting we will be present, PBL cannot call us to a meeting unless they are going to be talking to us about our position on the 10%, the salary reductions being returned and the financial audited information presented to us.”
According to President Hyde they are still strong in presenting their points and opinions as it relates to the 10% pay cut as well as the termination of staff. We are following this story and will keep you posted.