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posted 25 Apr 2016, 15:25 by Gerry Kangalee   [ updated 25 Apr 2016, 15:27 ]
The National Trade Union Centre (NATUC) issued the following statement on April 24th 2016:

NATUC unreservedly condemns the arrest and the unwarranted manhandling of Sister Ermine De Bique, the General Secretary of the Contractors and General Workers Trade Union (GCWTU) and Executive Member of the National Trade Union Centre. NATUC calls on the Police Complain Authority to investigate the matter without delay. 

NATUC is concerned that Sister De Bique was carrying out her legitimate trade union activities when she was arrested and the arrest therefore raises serious concerns in our minds over the intention of the arrest.

We wish to place on record, that no amount of misuse or abuse by anyone within the protective services can or will scare the labour movement in carrying out our scared responsibilities to the poor, the disadvantage in our society and the working class in Trinidad & Tobago.

Natuc further notes with concern, that the incident involving Sister De Bique has its genesis in the layoff of more than one hundred (100) workers from the South Borough Council. We are concerned that in this time when our economy is contracting, the government will implement the failed strategy of the laying off of workers on the basis that the workers are temporary workers and that the allocation for the Borough has been cut by the government.

NATUC will continue to advocate that sending workers home will only exacerbate the economic crisis. History has taught us that when you take away the purchasing power of workers, when you deny workers the right to earn wages, to provide for their families, you are in fact pouring social unrest, like gasoline, on the already economic flames of poverty and depression.

Government must be forever mindful that their failure to protect the working class will lead to the retrenchment floodgates being opened wider by private enterprise. Clico was too big to fail and the said philosophy must be articulated and practiced not in words but indeed when dealing with workers, the poor and disadvantaged.
Our economy needs job lead growth rooted in real wages and the full utilization of our productive forces.

Our Human Capital is our Economic strength and we must us our human resources fully and wisely if we are to come out of this economic crisis and all the social disharmony that can derive therefrom. If we ignore this Economic truism that retrenchment and layoff is not the answer but job lead growth is the Answer.
Natuc say together we can solve our problems. No IMF and World Bank medicine has ever cured the patient.




No to polarization.

No to silo. Embrace all in the interest of Trinidad and Tobago.

We can do it together.