JIS News

Acting President of the Jamaica Confederation of Trade Unions (JCTU), Wayne Jones, is confident that the unions will be able to secure improvement in the conditions of employment for public sector workers, as negotiations with Government for a Third Memorandum of Understanding (MoU 3) got underway yesterday (Jan. 31).
Mr. Jones, who was speaking at a pre-negotiation press session held at the National Heroes Circle office of the Ministry of Finance and Public Service, said his conviction is based on the success of the previous two MoUs and the improvements that those agreements have heralded in the workplace.
“We are all very confident and our confidence is bolstered by the improved relationship that the MOU model has heralded. We expect to continue the trend that has been developed overtime, whereby come April of each year, workers see the improvements in the pay cheque, notwithstanding the short time that we have,” he stated.
He informed that for the first time, the Confederation will be representing the claims of a number of non-member public sector unions and associations at the bargaining table and encouraged other groups to adopt this model of representational collective bargaining.
“And I say to those groups that have not yet become converts to this model of representational collective bargaining, that we still remain open and are in fact encouraging them to recognize the value in using this kind of model to ensure that we deliver on that which public sector workers expect from us,” he stated.
Senator Dwight Nelson, Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Finance and Public Service, who is leading the Government’s team into the negotiations, said he felt privileged to participate as he has sat on all three sides of the bargaining table – capital, labour and now Government. “I see myself primarily as a facilitator in this room,” he stated, while noting the commitment of both Government and the trade unions to the process. Senator Nelson, who resigned as President of the JCTU to take up the Ministerial appointment, expressed the hope that the negotiations will be concluded by the end of February.