And while the Prime Minister rarely ever declines an interview to the media, the Public Service Union (PSU) says there is a serious lack of communication between the Ministry of Health and the Belizean public. PSU’s President Dean Flowers spoke on this matter as well as the treatment of the country’s frontline workers.
Dean Flowers, President, Public Service Union: “One of the first things that needs to be done is for a professional set of public relations officers which include health professionals be put together the public relations campaign. I would say as was said to me at a meeting by a good padre, politicians are the worst messengers and if we don’t understand what that means we will continue to be getting this blowback of noncooperation that clearly the government is receiving from members of the wider public because we have politicians who people have absolutely not trust and faith in trying to tell people what to do and it’s simply coming off as wanting to dictate.”
President Flowers also spoke on the issue of transparency within the Ministry of Health.
Dean Flowers, President, Public Service Union: “I want to say to the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Public Service please start treating our nurses and our doctors with respect. Please stop transferring and relocating our nurses and our doctors away from their families without due process. And when I say due process I’m saying about adequate notice, meaningful consultations. Hearing from them, getting them to volunteer. Stop treating our nurse and doctors as if they were robots or as if they’re machines without any feelings. These people have feelings, they have family and they deserve respect and so I want to call on the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Public Service to please start compensating our nurses and our doctors on time, and please find the way how we can protect them. We must protect them, we must find the money to get them to and from work safe. Stop putting our nurses and our doctors on public transportation at six in the morning and at seven at night, giving them one meal for the entire day and if they work from seven at night to seven in the morning they’re not given anything to eat and they still have to find their way to work even in the face of a pandemic. It’s unacceptable. That is where our investments should be. And so I want to encourage our nurses and doctors to please continue to exercise patience, we are praying for you and we are hoping that none of you would contract this deadly virus but it is important that you also keep us abreast of the kind of unethical, immoral and unfair treatment that is being dished out upon you by the Ministry of Public Service and the Ministry of Health and I will say to you that we will continue to support you. We will continue to act responsible of course because what we all need to do is to cooperate this is not the time for us to be divided or for us to be fighting but we must ensure that we treat each other with respect and fairness and with humanity at all times.”