The National Union of Public Workers (NUPW) has some issues it wants aired in an urgent meeting with the Sanitation Service Authority (SSA) this week.
The issues relate to a long promised medical health scheme, salary increases, a lack of upward movement, and health and occupational safety.
Assistant general secretary Wayne Walrond highlighted the issues in a recent media statement.
“The National Union of Public Workers has been endeavouring for quite some time to have a number of matters resolved on behalf of workers of the Sanitation Services Authority.
“The implementation of a proposed medical insurance scheme is one of the major issues that SSA workers need addressed. While management has approved the medical plan in principle, there is no further evidence to show how soon the plan will be implemented,” Walrond noted.
He said an upgrade in pay had been in train for several years and should be on the front-burner.
“The workers are steadfast that based on what their job requires, they should be properly compensated. They are concerned that in addition to the extreme hazards that relate to the job, many of their colleagues have passed away prematurely before reaching their retirement age. They view this as sacrificing their lives for the good of the nation,” Walrond added.
He said safety and health issues continued to be a source of concern, inclusive of the provision of proper recreational facilities, protocols and sanitising for COVID-19 arrangements and the provision of uniforms, which have been outstanding for more than six years.
In relation to administration and staffing, he said workers felt that the practice of rehiring retired staffers had stifled promotional opportunities.
“They believe that the day-to-day administration of the SSA needs to reflect a human face where workers feel empowered and a sense of belonging. The gross discontent can potentially lead to a volatile industrial relations climate and there is need to act with a sense of urgency on SSA workers’ concerns,” Walrond said.