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Jun 14, 2012

B.N.T.U. says G.O.B. owes members millions

George Frazer

While loan holders with the DFC will be happy with the write-off, the unions are uneasy about the cutbacks anticipated in the national budget.  News Five spoke today with the Belize National Teachers Union (B.N.T.U.) General Secretary, George Frazer, who says that the union has been in discussion with government for the past three and a half years with respect to pending salary adjustments for teachers and public officers. This, according to Frazer, is in the range of one hundred and twenty-five million dollars. Frazer says that the cost of living keeps going up, but their salaries remain stagnant and that there are many other areas that the government can cut spending. 

 

George Frazer, General Secretary, B.N.T.U.

“We know the country faces many challenges in terms of the performance of the economy revenues and others, the pressures of the world depression, there is relatively high unemployment and economic pressures on these people.”

 

Duane Moody

“Do you feel that this cutback in the budget is going to possibly reflect when it comes to those decisions; going to the table and confirming whether teachers are going to get their increments; what is due to them?”

 

George Frazer

“Well not only teachers, workers generally out there. One or two unions have been able to get some adjustments and we prefer to call it salary adjustments. The unions are looking at the figures. We see areas where excesses and cuts can be made. We see areas where government can refocus its energies and policies and bring in more revenues and I believe there is the will to sit down and reach a fair agreement where we can look at what’s going on. The B.N.T.U., the P.S.U. and the A.P.S.S.M., presented twenty-three proposals on things like better working conditions, increased allowances to match the cost of living, the matter of restructuring of our tax system.  Are there any insurance or coverage for police and B.D.F. and other people out there whose lives are on the front line? As we are aware there are none. Over the past three years, we have reached a number of agreements but there are six outstanding issues of the twenty-three that we are yet to agree with including the salary adjustments or raise of pay. So we are hoping to engage in another week or two. We are prepared to sit down seriously and look at things and press for what we know are the rights for our workers and people. The dollar figures vary with the matter of salary increases and other for the approximately thirteen thousand people that government pays—public officers, teachers, nurses, B.D.F. and other. What we are asking for would cost about twenty-five million dollars for the first year and up. We are figuring the whole thing to be over a hundred and twenty-five million. So we are concerned at that. As you mentioned the three unions that are negotiating with government, we expect to get back at the negotiating table in another week or two to address these areas. As responsible unions, we want to sit down, look at the figures, but at the same time we are also looking at the options and where government is going.”

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3 Responses for “B.N.T.U. says G.O.B. owes members millions”

  1. Rod says:

    This gov. Will send you into the abyss period.

  2. A Jew says:

    What are you waiting for BNTU?? You gave hell to the past government and now i see you all quite calm and quiet. What or who are you afraid of?

  3. Concern Blzean says:

    Let us put up a strike and send the message clear to Mr. Barrow; we teacher are here to play no political games. Before they won the election In March 2012 he promised only if they win and find oil in the jewel he could considered the salaries adjustment…. teachers let us not be fools of his political nonsense. We tied a lies form this Gov’t

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