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Police Association does not need trade union status

Posted: Monday, May 25, 2020. 10:30 am CST.

By Aaron Humes: In discussing the upcoming Police Association elections, Commissioner of Police Chester Williams suggested that those elected should not be “yes-men” to him and senior staff.

He said that the Association would be a great help in terms of working with him on welfare issues for officers: ownership of land, insurance, sickness benefits and a proper assistance scheme for officers and their families to avoid having them “doing barbecue sales and begging here and begging there.”

But should the Association be moving toward trade union status considering how much they are being asked to take on, we asked?

In answer, Commissioner Williams cited the standing rules for the Association, which among other things states they are to advise on such issues, but he insisted that these would not necessarily make them consistent with a trade union.

The Police Department is of necessity an essential service, which means they are governed by Chapter 297 of the Laws of Belize relating to disputes in essential services which limit their ability to conduct industrial action.

The elections are scheduled for mid-June.

 

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