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Oct 24, 2013

CWU Executives ask membership to stay away

Antonio Gonzalez

The membership of the Christian Workers Union, an estimated seven hundred men and women, employed by various private and public sector agencies, is in a wrangle.  President Antonio Gonzalez has asked the membership to refrain from attending a general congress scheduled for October twenty-sixth.  But on Monday, outspoken union members, Dion Pitter and Raymond Rivers, began making rounds within the media inviting representatives and affiliates of the nine entities comprising the CWU to participate in an assembly.  That meeting should see the election of new executives based on an initial agreement in mid-August; however, the management of the CWU has requested its postponement.  On the other hand, the National Trade Union Congress of Belize, to which the CWU belongs, has issued an ultimatum regarding the congress.  The N.T.U.C.B. says that should the CWU forego Saturday’s meeting it will be immediately expelled from the fold.  This afternoon, union president Antonio Gonzalez and general secretary James McFoy visited the media to call upon their membership to stay away from the upcoming meeting. 

 

Antonio Gonzalez, Outgoing President, CWU

“The meeting for Saturday is not sanctioned or officially called by the executive of the Christian Workers Union.  It is not sanctioned or officially called.  So members, we are appealing to you and we ask you that you should not attend the meeting on Saturday.  This is not a meeting called by the Christian Workers Union.  So please, listen to your leadership at this stage and listen to the other union representatives who have called for unity and to stay away from this meeting on Saturday.  We cannot stop anybody from having a meeting but all we reiterate is that this meeting on Saturday has not been sanctioned or officially called by the Christian Workers Union.  Therefore, it’s not in accordance with the constitution of the union.  Another point is this, the Christian Workers Union is not soliciting funds for this meeting on Saturday.  So brothers and sisters, what we say is this, let us move together.  There is a lot of work to be done within the Christian Workers Union, you all know it.  You all know how you are feeling.  Some of you are on the edge of being left out of employment at this stage.  We have to fight for you all, we have to renew our commitment to better your living and working conditions and the only way we can do it is by insuring that you have a good collective bargaining agreement which is in the better interest of you all members.”

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