"CPSA News Letter"
Caribbean Public Services Association Young Workers’ Quarterly Newsletter CPSA Young Workers’ Voice “To Educate and Represent” September 2009 CPSA Young Workers’ Committee Message to Young Workers The CPSA Young Worker’s Com- mittee comprises of representa- tiative in the labour force by educating tives from each of the 17 CPSA ourselves, recommending change when it affiliates from 15 Caribbean its necessary, and even asking to be men- Countries. Young Workers in- tored by senior members. I once read, “one clude workers who are 35 years of the distinct gifts of being human is our of age and younger. ability to create our own destiny. Isn’t it surprising how many of us never accept Our Aims and Objectives are: this gift or just give it away, making some- Bro. Jason Hayward one else responsible for it”. ∗ To provide a voice for young Secretary CPSA Young Workers We as young workers cannot sit back and workers on issues and how Young workers it is very important that we wonder when things are going to change. they impact on them recognize that we are the future of the We have to stand up and start to demand ∗ To advise on ways to promote Trade Union movement, our Governments change! I know it is easier said than done the full integration of young and our Countries. Isn’t it ironic how the in many cases, but if young workers con- workers in trade unions leaders of today need to be continuously tinue to demand better job security, more ∗ To advise on trade union edu- encouraged to support the leaders of tomor- training and development, and fair wages, cation and training pro- row, when they where once inspiring to be it is my hope that the leaders will hear our leaders themselves. Succession planning voices. If we say nothing then we should grammes and activities for should be of the highest priority to every not complain when we continue to get left young workers Union, Government, or Organization. It in the cold. The CPSA Young Workers ∗ To be the voice of young public cannot be functional or realistic unless it Secretariat will act as a voice for young sector workers on a wide range involves the training and development of public service workers across the Carib- of issues younger workers. bean. ∗ To advise on and assist with the research and dissemination Young workers, we cannot rely on our Un- In Solidarity, of information concerning the ions, Our Government, or the organizations Bro Jason Hayward involvement of young public we work for to do it all for us. We must take a proactive approach to take a greater ini- sector workers in their unions ∗ To act as a support system for young members Caribbean Public Services Association March for Pensions in Grenada ∗ To promote the involvement of Morne Rouge, St. George’s, came alive as CPSA Conference hosted in Grenada, young members in CPSA edu- members chanted their Union song in tre- 2009. cation and training pro- mendous camaraderie on July 13, 2009. grammes and activities Affiliates of the Caribbean Public Services During 1983, The People’s Revolutionary ∗ To recognize and reward the Association participated in a ‘March for Government declared that civil servants contribution of young workers Pension’ in support of the Grenada Public who became employed after April 1, 1983 to the development of trade Workers Union as an inclusion to the ac- would not receive a pension due to the unionism tivities in celebration of the 39th Annual implementation of a National Insurance Scheme. If you want more information please email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org Continued page 2 CPSA Young Workers’ Voice Page 2 CPSA March (cont’d page 1) For decades, disgruntled workers and the Union fought Banded by unity they proved to onlookers, the media and the arduously to repeal this law. In an effort to sensitize au- authorities that they will continue to fight for the reinstate- thorities and to prove to members that the Union is still ment of pensions for civil servants. fighting to have their cause espoused, Public Workers from across the Caribbean took to the streets of Grenada Most importantly they indicated to the newly elected govern- in the blazing hot sun, wearing the respective unions t- ment that it is time to fulfill their election promise which was shirt, dancing, singing and carrying placards. to ‘…review the discrepancy in pension benefits accruing to those people who were employed before 1983 and after 1983 when the National Insurance Scheme was introduced. Protecting Young Workers from Workplace Hazards Young workers are more prone to occupa- The most frequently reported occupa- tional accidents and illnesses due to their tional diseases in the Caribbean are limited training, experience and skills. pesticide and heavy metal poisoning. Young and elderly workers may be more Skin, respiratory diseases and occupa- likely to suffer the effects of physical over- load and extreme environmental condi- tional hearing loss are also common. tions. They may also have increased sus- ceptibility to chemical exposures. Source: Caribbean Enviromental Health There are 20-27 million work-related acci- Institute (CEHI) dents in Latin America and the Caribbean http://www.cehi.org.lc/wh/index.htm annually. In the Caribbean in particular, there has been a general increase in the number of occupational accidents and dis- eases reported. www.Youngworkers.com.au Public Services International’s Position On Young Workers Young people are constantly told “you are what is important. To achieve sustainable the future”, but it is important to remember change, young people need to be able to that they are the partners of today as well. speak; and they need to be listened to. Young workers face particular needs, prob- lems and pressures, and are often identified PSI aims to directly address the is- as extremely vulnerable members of soci- sues young workers care about and the ety. problems they face. Empowering young workers around the world and letting them PSI supports young people who want to speak for themselves - in their own words - have a say in decision-making and in the is a key priority for PSI. It is a question of Young workers participate in changes which affect their lives. PSI will social justice and creating a future for the PSI Caribbean Regional Work- encourage the participation and involve- trade union movement itself. shop held in Grenada ment of young people in using their voices and words to define what they want and September 2009 CPSA Young Workers’ Voice Page 3 The Bahamas Public Service Union Young Workers Committee The vision of the Young Workers Committee of EDUCATION & TRAINING BPSU is to build a stronger union by encourag- ing young workers in the public service to join 1. The Young Workers was instrumental in the BPSU through introducing and developing organizing a seminar on “Personal Finan- various youth programs and activities that will cial Budgeting”. We invited persons from attract young workers. Our Young Workers Com- the Bahamas Chamber of Commerce, First mittee consists of a Chair, Vice Chair and three Caribbean International Bank and the Pub- (3) Committee Members. lic Workers Cooperative Credit Union Ltd. The Bahamas Public Services Union is celebrat- 2. The Young Workers hosted a seminar on ing 50 years of existence. In keeping with the the Trade Union Movement: Topics of inter- celebrations the Young Workers Committee has est were the History of the Trade Union the responsibility for spearheading the following Movement, Leadership Skills, Collective activities: Bargaining, the Industrial Relations & Em- ployment Acts of the Bahamas. ∗ Annual Whist Tournament ∗ Week of events leading up to Labour Day 3. Some of the Young Workers were also af- ∗ Membership Drive (Live Remote) at our Ser- forded the opportunity to attend the Na- vice Station tional Congress of Trade Union of the Baha- ∗ Church Service (50th Anniversary) mas (Labour College). ∗ Awards & Recognition Ceremony (50th Anni- versary) 4. The Young Workers were also instrumental in developing the BPSU Majestic Marlins ∗ Musical Extravaganza (50th Anniversary) Toastmasters Club. Stewards Update “It’s part of Mentor an Activist and see if there isn’t some- union is trying to get peo- every union Find a replacement for one you can mentor, ideally ple to volunteer for a com- activist’s job yourself. Ok, maybe not a younger person you can mittee, make sure the beginning tomorrow, but involve more in the union’s worker knows about the to bring other seriously think about your work. If the union wants opportunity. Remember co-workers and who could people along: stewards to gather signa- that unions work only step into the steward’s role tures on a petition, there’s when members get in- the more if you are unable to handle no reason this person can’t volved—so do what you can things. It’s part of every help out on the task. Hand- to spur that involvement. activists, the union activist’s job to bring ing out flyers? Same thing. stronger the other people along: the When you go to the union more activists, the stronger meeting, invite him or her -David Prosten. union” the union. Look around you to go along. If you know the Editor of Stewards Update CPSA Young Workers’ Secretariat Caribbean Public Services Association Young Workers’ Quarterly Newsletter 2009-2010 Sis. Samantha Fedee– Chair (Guyana Public Service Union) Sis. Denise Henry— Vice-Chair (Jamaica Civil Service Association) Bro. Jason Hayward —Secretary (Bermuda Public Services Union) Affiliates Include: ∗ Anguilla Civil Service Association Bro. Emmanus Alfred — Assistant ∗ Antigua & Barbuda Public Service Union Secretary/Treasurer ∗ Bahamas Public Service Union ∗ National Union of Public Workers (Barbados) (St. Lucia Civil Service Association) ∗ Belize Public Service Union ∗ Bermuda Public Services Union ∗ Dominica Public Service Union ∗ Grenada Public Workers’ Union ∗ Guyana local Government Officers Union ∗ Guyana Public Service Union ∗ Jamaica Association of Local Government Officers ∗ Jamaica Civil Service Association ∗ Montserrat Civil Service Association ∗ St. Lucia Civil Service Association ∗ St. Maarten– Windward Island Civil Service Union/Private Sector Email Us At Union ∗ St. Vincent & the Grenadines Public Service Union email@example.com ∗ Trinidad & Tobago - National Union of Government and Federated Workers Union In The News—Anguilla: Civil servants question legality of salary cut Members of the PSI affiliate An- that is being taken from them will be commercial banks and other institutions guilla Civil Service Association have repaid when the government of An- have had to re-negotiate their loan and chided the government for not con- guilla's financial situation improves. mortgage arrangements. sulting them before taking austerity CSA President, Gerard Gumbs, said measures including a 10 percent in his letter to the government leader In its communication with the govern- reduction of salary for grades A-F, a that the association expects “full reim- ment, the CSA stated that it “promotes 5 percent reduction for grades G-M bursement and will pursue such until accountability and transparency and as and a 5 percent reduction for wage it materialises.” such will be holding government ac- workers. countable going forward.” “We believe that sound economic op- The membership of the Anguilla portunities have been squandered and At a recent meeting of Caribbean Public CSA expressed its “deep dissatisfac- that we have also forfeited too much Sector trade unions, delegates gave ex- tion with the overall economic direc- for too little in return….This modus amples of the dangerous emerging trend tion” charted for Anguilla over the operandi we believe is a major con- of governments trying to hide behind past twelve years. The Anguillian tributor to the present financial posi- the world crisis and not observing estab- government unilaterally cut public tion and it should not be attributed to lished and agreed procedures to engage servants’ salaries and reduced the world economic melt down alone.” in genuine consultation with trade un- fringe benefits/allowances including the CSA said in its letter to the gov- ions. Delegates described the situation telephone and travelling allowances. ernment. as one in which some governments are In response, Chief Minister Fleming using the crisis “as an excuse to lay-off said that the government gave the The pay cuts have meant that several workers.” union the assurance that the money public servants with commitments to Source: http://financialcrisisblog.world-psi.org