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posted 14 Mar 2016, 08:31 by Gerry Kangalee

On March 12th 2016, the Secretary General of the Communication Workers Union issued the following statement.


The Communication Workers Union, (CWU), would like to publicly condemn the offensive, disrespectful, obscene and vengeful action taken by the owners of Arcelor Mittal to shut down its Steel Producing Plant at the Point Lisas Industrial Estate and in the process, destroy the lives of over seven hundred (700) workers and their families.

This is really a sad and dangerous day for our Country and is a clear indication of the exploitative and inhumane nature of some of these Multi National Corporations, who enter into these territories and squeeze out every ounce of productive capacity of the citizens and when they have had enough, they just pack up shop and go, leaving countless families in distress. This is the wicked and dastardly nature of the Capitalist Agenda at work, in full glare of the public.

What makes the CWU even more vex and angry, is the fact that this decision was taken immediately after the Industrial Court of Trinidad and Tobago handed down a Judgment which chastised the Company for their flagrant breach of the provisions of the Industrial Relations Act and the principles of good Industrial Relations Practices. Mittal has spat in the face of the Industrial Court and has shown contempt for the fairness and independence of the Industrial Relations Jurisprudence of Trinidad and Tobago.

This action is sacrilegious and must be condemned by all and sundry, if we are to demonstrate that we are an Independent nation of some 50 odd years. The CWU calls on the Chambers of Commerce, the Employers Consultative Association, the Trinidad and Tobago Manufactures Association and all the other Business Associations to openly condemn this atrocious act by Mittal, and we demand that they encourage Mittal to reverse this dastardly act in the best interest of the socio-economic stability of the country. In addition, we call on the Government of Trinidad and Tobago to immediately take steps to protect the sovereignty of this Country.

On the eve of the formation of the National Tripartite Action Council by the Government, this action by Mittal, has now thrown mud, mock and steel dust in that process and literally tells the Government that they are impotent when it comes to the protection of the jobs and the welfare of workers employed at these Multi National Corporations. It also says that they have no respect for the attempt by the Government to engage in tripartite discussions on a way forward for the Country in these troubling economic times.

Mittal has clearly sown the seeds for social and industrial relations instability. This is an outright and callous attack on the working class of the Country and as such, must be resisted with the full might of the Trade Union Movement. We are fully aware of the tendency for other employers and big business interests to follow suite and as such, we call on the entire Trade Union Movement to join together in solidarity as we mobilise to reverse this act by Arcelor Mittal and repel any future intent by the other Multi Nationals and Big Business Interests in the country. We must be prepared to engage in an intense struggle to protect the jobs, lives and welfare of citizens of Trinidad and Tobago and in the process protect the national interest from the exploitative hands and clutches of those wicked and disrespectful Capitalists Blood Suckers. 

A word to the Wise is sufficient.