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Pay offer to teachers “interim” ; Granger, GTU to meet

GTU President, Mark Lyte (standing) during the breakdown of salary talks with a Ministry of Education team led by Minister Nicolette Henry seated opposite Mr. Lyte.

In the wake of a decision by the Guyana Teachers Union (GTU) to call a strike after salary negotiations collapsed, Minister of State Joseph Harmon said the offer so far is “interim” and President David Granger wants to meet with union representatives next Monday.

The Honorable Minister of State further indicated that the meeting with the Minister of Education held on October 26, 2017 was never intended to be the final position of the Administration but rather an interim arrangement,” the two sides said in a joint statement.

The talks broke down Thursday after Minister of Education, Nicolette Henry told GTU President Mark Lyte and other representatives that teachers are public servants and they would be paid the same increases ranging from eight percent to half a percent as has been granted to public servants.

That announcement almost immediately sparked off a twice weekly strike call from next week Thursday and Friday.

However, Harmon said that offer is ” interim” and Granger wants to meet with GTU officials next Monday to iron out all remaining issues.

Following is the full text of the joint statement issued by the GTU and government.

A meeting was held today Friday October 27, 2017 between the Executive of the Guyana Teachers’ Union and the Honorable Minister of State to discuss the Union’s concerns about the lack of progress with regard to negotiations of salary increases and other non-salary benefits for its members.

The Union alluded to a meeting held with the Hon. Minister of Education in which its concern regarding the status of salary increases for teachers which was proposed since December 2015 was not being seriously addressed; and that the pronouncements by the Hon. Minister of Education at the meeting were at variance with the Union’s understanding of the Government’s approach to the matter.

The Honorable Minister of State in response alluded to his most recent pronouncement on the matter at a Post Cabinet Media Conference held on October 19, 2017 when he indicated that the issues regarding increased salaries for teachers were being considered by the Government in the form of a Multi-Year Proposal submitted by the Guyana Teachers’ Union.

The Honorable Minister of State further indicated that the meeting with the Minister of Education held on October 26, 2017 was never intended to be the final position of the Administration but rather an interim arrangement.

The Honorable Minister also indicated that His Excellency the President was very concerned about the reports regarding the outcome of the meeting between the Union and the Ministry of Education and had signaled his willingness to meet with the Union on Monday October 30, 2017 at 11:00 a.m. to discuss all matters of concern to the Union.

The Union indicated its acceptance of His Excellency, the President’s offer and iterated that it was committed to the process of Collective Bargaining and that it would bring these developments to the attention of its members.

 

  • Col123

    You have to negotiate with the top dogs… the top dogs just set a precedent by testing the waters with an interim offer through their lap dogs… and admitting it!..well… these folks representing their union just learn not to settle with lap dogs!

    • brain dead idiot

      being saying so a long time unions just want their dues at the end of the month

  • Lancelot Brassington

    By getting involved in this matter is Mr Granger acknowledging that Ms Henry has limitations in the areas of negotiations and human relations? The original iron lady Margaret Thatcher once burst into tears on TV after her son had gone missing in a North African desert but Madam Henry projects hardness and toughness that are absolutely out of this world. One can be feminine without being a pushover. I trust that the teachers will be at least somewhat satisfied following their meeting with the president.