Grenada's Fiscal space under threat by Public Sector Unions' demands

Friday, November 17, 2017 6:19 PM - George's, Grenada

The Government Negotiating Team and the two public sector unions, the Public Workers Union and the Grenada Technical and Allied Workers Union, resumed negotiations on the one-off payments earlier today, November 17.

The Unions had previously rejected the additional sum of $650 in one-off payments. In an attempt to reach a settlement and to ensure that there is no breach of the Fiscal Responsibility Act, Government had reconsidered its offer, by re-prioritising its expenditure, including reducing the sum it had originally allocated for the regularisation of temporary workers in the service, and adjusting its one-off offer upwards to $700 across the board or $750 for workers in the system who have worked for more than three years and $650 for those who have worked for less than three years.

In the face of Government’s latest offer, the unions made no adjustment to their demand of 1500 dollars.

It must be understood that under Government’s new offer, a lesser number of workers would be regularised within the service, as the funds for financing regularisation and other Human Resource matters will now have to be shifted to finance the increased one-off payment to public workers.

The Government Negotiating Team urges the Trade Unions to settle this matter on the basis of this last offer because the fiscal space does not allow for any more than that, and any breach of the Fiscal Responsibility Law can very well result in the loss of grants and other reliefs to the tune of hundreds of millions to the State of Grenada.

The Government Negotiating Team finds it necessary to restate that in addition to wages and salaries, a sum of over $106 million dollars have already been paid to public officers between the periods 2013 to 2017.

Furthermore, in regards to Government’s ongoing commitment to pension restoration and reform, Government has placed on the table a proposal to the unions to solve this long-standing issue; cognizant that in doing so, Government will have to commit additional hundreds of millions of dollars, which will also have to be financed by the taxpayers of Grenada.

The Government Negotiating Team again appeals to the union leadership and the rank and file to accept this absolute offer.

Any additional demand to this present one-off offer will breach the Law and place the country’s finances in jeopardy; therefore hindering Government’s ability to meet the needs of all the citizens of Grenada.





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