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3,000 public sector workers in Barbados to lose jobs

 • BRIDGETOWN


Barbados’s Finance Minister, Chris Sinckler, has announced cost-saving measures that will result in approximately 3,000 public sector employees on the island losing their jobs.

Sinckler made the announcement in a ministerial statement to the Barbados Parliament yesterday.

“We have estimated that it will affect 3,000 employees across the public service, central government and statutory entities.

“We have agreed that, if possible, there should be an even split in the proposed retrenchments between central government and statutory entities; but if not possible, then the split of 2,000 from the general service and 1,000 from the statutory entities must be imposed.”

He also disclosed that effective January 1, there will also be a freeze on all increments.

“Effective January 1, 2014, there shall be enforced a freeze on the payment of increments for the next two years. Appropriate arrangements will be made for the lost of income to be properly factored in to the computation of overall pension benefits... both the Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs and the Ministry of the Civil Service, including the Personnel Administration division, have been mandated to continue consultation and negotiations with the workers’ representatives to ensure all appropriate steps are taken to safeguard the rights of all workers affected by these measures and to craft interventions aimed at mitigating the dislocation which will undoubtedly be caused, including those interested to enter into retraining and redeployment programmes in the private sector,” he said.

He said all members of parliament, permanent secretaries and personal assistants were taking a ten per cent salary reduction.

Ministries have also been instructed to immediately cut travel budgets by 50 per cent.

According to the finance minister, the governing Democratic Labour Party government is trying to plug a gap of BDS$143 million annually, including BDS$34 million in the last quarter of the year.

—CMC

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