JCTU Wants Expansion of Government’s Early Retirement Programme

The Jamaica Confederation of Trade Unions (JCTU) is calling on the government to extend its early retirement programme to younger public sector workers.

The Special Early Retirement Programme, SERP, is for employees between the ages of 50 and 59. The Programme offers special incentives such as two weeks’ salary for each year of service up to a maximum of one year’s salary. It also offers payment in lieu of accumulated vacation leave.

President of the JCTU, Helene Davis Whyte, says the union is not opposed to the programme.

In the meantime, Deputy Financial Secretary in charge of technical coordination in the Ministry of Finance and the Public Service, Dunstan Bryan, says it would cost the government too much if it lowers the age cohort eligible for SERP.

He says certain categories of public sector works are excluded from the programme.

Mr. Bryan also says SERP is the first of several initiatives aimed at creating a more efficient public service.

The application deadline for SERP is next Tuesday.

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