Former Trade Union leader, Kingsley St Hill, asserting that in unity there is strength, has suggested that it would be a bad move for the police to leave the umbrella Trade Union Federation (TUF).
St Hill was responding to reports that members of the Police Welfare Association (PWA) voted Monday to reject a government offer of a $1, 500 bonus, negotiate separately for salaries and eventually part ways with the TUF.
However the former trade union leader told St Lucia Times that the TUF existed to get public service unions together.
“It is highly improbable that you could give police officers ‘X percent’ increase and give teachers and nurses ‘X plus’ or ‘X minus’ increase,” St Hill, a former President of the Saint Lucia Civil Service Association (CSA), explained.
“The idea was never for us to negotiate conditions of work as a unit, it was always for salary increases that we got together because as public officers we fall in the same grade – so we needed uniformity,” he noted.
St Hill said from his understanding of the current structure, if the police get a 10 percent increase, teachers will not get five percent.
“It is fool hardy to think that they will get something different,” he asserted.
St Hill observed that the members of the TUF all negotiated separately for terms and conditions of employment, but on the matter of salary increases there was a united stand.