Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : December 22nd 2015 Contents A14
Postal workers cry foul
Pay hike for
Postal workers were fuming yesterday after
they were informed that managers and super-
visors of TTPost got a wage hike but they did
The workers, who are working on 2010 salaries,
are now threatening to take legal action over the
decision not to sign a new salary agreement with
At a media briefing yesterday, general secretary
of the T&T Postal Workers Union (TTPWU),
David Forbes, said, "Heads should roll for this.
We will take them to court. Because it is Christmas
they think we were sleeping and they could do
what they want and apply the increase without
engaging the union," he said.
Speaking at the union s El Dorado
office, Forbes said he was told that the
settlement for management was a dis-
respect to the union and called for the
managing director of TTPost Reynold
Baldeosingh to "pack his briefs."
He said the postal union represented all workers.
Forbes said the offer to settle with the management
was reasonable but declined to give details.
A representative of the Joint Trade Union Move-
ment (JTUM) Peter Burke, who attended the press
briefing, said JTUM was supportive of the postal
He said what occurred amounted to bad indus-
trial relations practice and "union busting."
In response, Baldeosingh said the management
received an offer from the CPO on December 8,
via the permanent secretary, for salary increases
to middle management and other supervisory
"The letter clearly stated that the CPO did not
recognise the TTPWU as the bargaining union
for the period 2011 to 2014. This information was
submitted to the union in writing together with
the offer for the staff. The management did not
make a direct offer to the 17 staff (members)," he
Baldeosingh said he was aware that the union
subsequently held a meeting with the relevant
staff and conveyed the CPO s offer.
He said staff members wrote to management
acknowledging they received the offer via the
union and that they had accepted the offer and
were asking that it be implemented.
"Bearing in mind that the CPO did not recognise
the union for this period and that the management
is not authorised to sign a collective agreement
with the union for this category of staff for the
period, management is unable to do so," he said.
Baldeosingh said the new salaries were imple-
mented effective December 16.
Despite this turn of events, there have been no
problems with the delivery of the mail, Forbes
Prison officers claim
President of the Prison
Ceron Richards is calling
for the prison executive
to properly educate offi-
cers on the effects of new
installed at the nation s
Prisons officers have
expressed concern about
the possibility of overex-
posure to harmful radia-
In a telephone inter-
view, yesterday, Richards
said: "What we
asked for was
tion so they
cers) won t have
any fears. That could have
been treated by the
administration had they
embarked on a drive on
the use of scanners and
all the questions they
Richards said the exec-
utive had the responsibil-
ity to allay fears by ensur-
ing there was a proper
policy position to guide
the use of the scanners.
He said the scanners have been implemented at
all the nation s prisons.
The scanners were installed to combat the traf-
ficking in drugs, guns and other contraband entering
the prison system.
However, the prison administration has not given
any information on the jammers. Cellphone jammers
were also ordered to prevent prisoners using phones
to communicate, as well as to curb the trade of cell-
phones behind bars.
"We got information coming from all quarters
and we want the correct information. It is not that
we don t want it (the scanners). It is a very useful
addition but considering it is a new concern," he
Meanwhile, Richards said the Government could
do a lot more with regard to the security and safety
concerns of the prisons officers.
"They need to bring legislation to treat or amend
the prison agenda concerning the safety and security
concerns of our officers. We have not heard or have
a response from Government, the Minister of Nation-
al Security (Edmund Dillon) or Prime Minister (Dr
Keith Rowley) whether they will be pursuing the
safety of officers in Parliament," he said.
Attempts to contact Prisons Commissioner Sterling
Stewart proved futile. An official said the scanners
existed in the airports just as "we have it here."
Dr George Laquis of the T&T Cancer Society said
radiation from the scanners was not cancerous.
"There are scanners that have no radiation, some
are at the airports that have no radiation. They just
scan the body. I don t know which one they have
but the chances are non-existent. It is a different
kind of scanners which detects objects," he said. CC
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Tuesday, December 22, 2015
Dr Keith Rowley
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