Reflection Time For Trade Unions

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Prime Minister Freundel Stuart has called on the trade union movement to reflect on those industrial relations practices which must be retained, reclaimed or gotten rid of as soon as possible.

Mr. Stuart made the comments yesterday while addressing the annual Barbados Workers??? Union???s May Day Celebrations at Browne???s Beach.

He urged the trade unionists to reflect on the industrial relations practices over the last 50 years that were lost, but needed to be urgently reclaimed.

He asked: ???What is it in our industrial relations practice that we have not lost over the last 50 years and we need at all cost to try and retain? And what is it in our industrial relations practice that we have not lost over the last 50 years and that we need to get rid of as soon as possible because it does not promote the best interest of the trade union movement or of the workers themselves?

???This is a period for reflection; it is a period to do an audit on where we are, how we got here, and where we want to go when we leave here. We can only do that by asking ourselves questions and answering ourselves honestly.???

The Prime Minister expressed the view that those questions applied, not only to the trade union movement, but to the church, the school system, employers??? organisations and the country generally.

Mr. Stuart said there were many mountains ahead that governments and trade unions had to climb. Admitting that there were issues between labour and capital that had to be resolved, he expressed confidence that they could embark on the process of solving them with level headedness.

???There are many issues in education, there will be issues in health, there will be issues in water and there will be issues in every sector of the national life ??? There are always going to be issues that we have to confront as partners in this tripartite arrangement.

But I count on the maturity and commonsense of our trade union leadership and the commonsense and level headedness of the workers of Barbados to see us through all of the challenges ahead???,??? he stressed.

sharon.austingill-moore@barbados.gov.bb

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