JCTU LASH GOV’T FOR ANNOUNCING CHANGES TO PUBLIC SECTOR STAFF ORDERS WITHOUT FINALIZING NEGOTIATIONS

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Finance Minister Dr. Nigel Clarke is being criticized by trade unions for his announcement of expected changes to the public service staff orders, relating to maternity, paternity and family leave.

He is also being chastised for appearing to offer workers a goodwill benefit, when in fact, the leave arrangements are items being lobbied for by unions.

This as the issues are still being discussed between the parties and nothing has been finalized.

During a press briefing yesterday (Tues), Dr. Clarke stated that by the end of September, public sector workers will get details of the changes.

The new leave arrangements, which will form part of the public sector compensation restructuring, includes extended paid maternity leave to three months.

In reacting to the announcement, the Jamaica Confederation of Trade Unions JCTU, described Mr. Clarke’s utterances as premature and untidy.

JCTU President Helene Davis White, said during negotiations, the government had indicated that while its in agreement, the details will have to be finalized.

She said the unions hope to finalize the items when next the parties meet at the negotiating table.