Minister of Labour and Social Partnership Relations, Colin Jordan.

Public sector workers will not be the only ones bearing the burden of the economic crisis.

This assurance was given on Thursday by Minister of Labour and Social Partnership Relations, Colin Jordan, as he addressed the Congress of Trade Unions and Staff Association of Barbados’ (CTUSAB) 12th Biennial Delegates’ Conference, at the Three W’s Oval, University of the West Indies, Cave Hill.

Acknowledging that it was his duty to state this, he said Government had broadened its policies to include other sectors and persons, even non-residents to help carry some of the burden.

He stressed: “Every Barbadian knows that there are going to be some tough times ahead over the next two to three years; there may be some displacement as we adjust our economy. But our decision to ask the hotel sub-sector … the shared (accommodation) economy sub-sector… businesses … our creditors … persons at higher pay scales… and visitors … to bear some of the burden should be an indication… that workers in the public sector will not be the only ones asked to carry some of the weight of the adjustment that must take place to get our economy going right.”

The Minister emphasised it was a point in time that required all to work in solidarity with a strict discipline, focused on effecting the viable solutions contained in the Barbados Economic Recovery and Transformation plan. “It is at this juncture in our history that Barbados requires our best collective will and efforts to succeed,” he said.

While commending the CTUSAB conference, he said such dialogue between governments and the social partners promoted consensus-building and a democratic involvement of the various vested interests in the labour market.

Head of the Barbados Private Sector Association, Edward Clarke, in assuring the Minister of his organisation’s commitment, said the private sector stood ready to work with CTUSAB in re-energising the labour management relations within the private sector and other organisations to ensure the country’s progress and development in the future.

“We cannot do otherwise. The private sector and the country stand to greatly benefit from a vibrant, efficient and engaged public sector, especially, which will positively respond to the challenges and improve the ease of doing business in Barbados,” he stated.

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