Key Unions Breaking Ranks with JCTU on Signing New Govt Deals

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The Union Of Schools’ Agricultural and Allied Workers, USAAW, is breaking ranks with the Jamaica Confederation of Trade Unions, JCTU, and holding out from signing a new wage deal with the government.

General Secretary of USAAW, Keith Comrie, says the group needs clarity on some aspects of the agreement.

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Finance Minister Audley Shaw, confirmed with Nationwide News last Thursday that the JCTU had accepted a wage increase of 16-percent over four years.

The Bustamante Industrial Trade Union, BITU and the National Workers Union, NWU have also accepted the deal.

However, Mr. Comrie says while not against the wage package, there are issues concerning the minimum wage.

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He says he also has concerns regarding those at the lower end of the pay scale.

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Meanwhile, First Vice President of the University and Allied Workers Union, UAWU, Clifton Grant, says his union also has concerns about the wage deal.

He took issue with the JCTU signing a deal with the government before getting consensus from all the subgroups.

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He says a meeting will be held with the JCTU to discuss the concerns. Mr. Grant says the confederation must work to maintain its unity.

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