Prime Minister Freundel Stuart has disclosed that ???some fairly substantial amendments??? are in the pipeline for the Public Service Act to make it more user-friendly.
In addition, Mr. Stuart said a lot of the work had already been done and expressed the hope that the amended Act would be completed during the first half of this year.
He made the disclosure recently, during a near two-hour meeting at Ilaro Court with officials of the Barbados Union of Teachers.
Those present were: President, Pedro Shepherd; General Secretary, Herbert Gittens; Vice President, Richmark Cave; Public Relations Officer, Dwane Goddard; Executive Member, Andrea Puckering; and Deputy General Secretary, Gilbert Carmichael.??Also in attendance were Permanent Secretary in the Prime Minister???s Office, Sonja Welch; and her Deputy, Margaret Jones.
The Prime Minister said a draft report, based on changes recommended by the unions, had been prepared and the unions would be invited to give feedback. He added that the recommendations would be put in draft legislation and circulated to the unions.
Mr. Stuart stated that he was pleased that the Ministry of Education had put a system in place to meet with the unions, so there could be regular consultations. He pointed out that he attached great importance to the work of teachers, since they were entrusted with the shaping of young minds.
Mr. Shepherd said he too looked forward to regular discussions with the Ministry, since the union would be afforded the opportunity to discuss issues in education and influence policy.
During the talks, he highlighted a number of concerns, some of which Prime Minister Stuart addressed immediately, and others he promised to investigate and share the information with the union.