Wednesday, April 24, 2024

BWU out to help redundant workers

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THE BARBADOS WORKERS’ UNION (BWU) will be focusing on training and outreach going forward as a means of helping retrenched workers.

Following a service yesterday to launch the Social Partnership’s 16th annual Week of Excellence at St George Parish Church, BWU general secretary Senator Toni Moore said they were seeking to give hope to Barbadians.

“We recognise we are in a period of [continuing] challenge where we continue to grapple with issues of the economy, which are creating some measure of pressure in the labour market as it relates to the ability to be employed and keep employment.

“The one constant is change and the union sees it as a challenge, as we will not be doing things the way we always used to do them, but we, like other organisations, have to be able to reorient to meet the challenges of the times,” she said.

Moore said these changes would include a renewed focus on listening to workers to find out the issues as well as reaching out to the youth.

“One of the things we have to do is keep in contact with those who are looking to us for help. We are recommitting to listening to the people, finding out specifically the areas of interest and issues that matter to them, and how we can help.

“We recognise our primary role going forward will be to focus on education and training. We should be able to reposition our people in terms of training, both at the Labour College and Solidarity House. We have also reached out to the Ministry of Youth because we recognise our youth are in crisis, and we see the union could be a safe space for youth, not just regarding their rights in the workplace but from a social aspect as well.”

Moore added that this kind of focus was vital in these trying times and it was up to corporate Barbados to step up.

“We need to save our youth. I think that organisations across the country at all levels, unions included, must recognise that beyond the bread and butter issues, these are the real issues we must be concerned about and if we are going to save our society, we must act now.

“One of the things we recognise is that there is a lack of hope and confidence. The union recognises itself as an organisation which has to be bringing that hope and confidence to people,” she said.

Senator Reverend John Rogers, in his sermon, reminded the congregation children mimicked adults, so if people were questioning why there was so much lawlessness, they should first look inwards.

“As we embark on this Week of Excellence, it is not only a call for the Social Partnership, but for all Barbadians and every Christian to remember that as the Lord has been the people’s guide, that we must now reflect [God’s light] for generations to come so they can experience the love, peace and joy that can be found in a life of service to God,” the rector said.

The theme for the week is Driving Change Towards The New Economy. It will include several presentations and panel discussions, beginning today at the Grand Salle and continuing tomorrow at Solidarity House.

The celebrations end on Saturday when the union will take to the streets of The City to interact with workers to share ideas and opportunities concerning productivity and excellence. ( CA)

SENATOR REVEREND John Rogers (right) leading the clergy in song. (Pictures by Nigel Browne.)

MINISTER OF LABOUR and Social Partnership Relations Colin Jordan (left) chatting with BWU general secretary Senator Toni Moore during the peace greeting.

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