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posted 8 Jun 2010, 19:07 by Gerry Kangalee   [ updated 10 Jun 2010, 06:27 by Unknown user ]
Labour sources are buzzing with the news that the cabinet of Trinidad and Tobago has blanked the President of NATUC from attending the 99th International Labour Conference (ILC) now underway in Geneva, Switzerland.

The ILC is held every year and is attended by all members of the International Labour Organisation (ILO) which is a tripartite agency attached to the United Nations. Trinidad and Tobago has been a member of the ILO since independence.

Each member country of the International Labour Organisation is represented by a delegation consisting of two government delegates, an employer delegate, a worker delegate and their respective advisers. The advisers may substitute for the delegate.

The 2010 ILC agenda includes: Decent work for domestic workers (first year of a standard-setting committee); HIV/AIDS in the world of work (second and final year of a standard-setting committee); a general discussion on the strategic objective of employment and a review of the follow-up to the 1998 Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work.

Those in the know state that the names submitted to the Ministry of Labour by NATUC included Annisette and former NATUC President Robert Giusseppi, both of whom were blanked by the government.

President of the National Union of Government and Federated Workers, James Lambert and Ida Le Blanc, General Secretary of the National Union of Domestic Employees (NUDE) were the other two names on the list. Comrade Le Blanc is already in Geneva at the ILC.

The unprecedented action by the government in deciding who should represent NATUC has sent shock waves throughout the labour movement and many labour activists who support the People’s Partnership have expressed unease at what they fear may be the beginning of a new thrust of state interference in the labour movement in the tradition of the PNM.