The General Workers’ Union has ordered industrial actions on behalf of its members who are currently employed as care workers with Healthmark, after this company and the Health Ministry have not proposed working hours which do justice to these workers. These actions are ordered notwithstanding the Minister of Health’s admission of understanding, expressed in a meeting with the General Workers’ Union, as well as expressing his intent on addressing this situation. These actions cover all aspects of the Government health sector where the Healthmark workers are present.
The GWU Government and Public Entities Secretary, Kendrick Bondin, stated that under these directives being ordered, these workers will no longer commit to the washing and making of beds, as well as any other duties which do not fall under the responsabilities directly assigned to them. He also stated that, unless the Health Ministry and Healthmark stop ignoring the Union’s requests for these working hours to be adjusted accordingly, by Monday the 4th of November, these actions will come into affect.
Bondin stated that the Health Minister’s refusal to do anything, even after stating an agreement to this proposal in front of the Director General for the Department of Industrial and Employment Relations, is unacceptable. He stated that the Healthmark workers also form part of the Health Ministry, and they cannot be asked to work additional hours because of the way that working hours are currently being allocated to them: “It’s unacceptable that we have a situation of first-class and second-class workers.”
The GWU makes it clear that, unless an agreement is reached, it will resort to further industrial actions, in order to safeguard its members’ interests.