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Chamber of Commerce calls on Government to rethink recent labour law amendment

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Posted: Monday, August 24, 2020. 9:18 pm CST.

By BBN Staff: The Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) is calling on the Government of Belize (GOB) to engage all relevant stakeholders to discuss the Labour (Amendment) Bill 2020.

The BCCI issued a statement today, noting that GOB drafted the Bill without consulting the Chamber or the Labour Advisory Board (LAB). “We first saw a copy of the Bill when advising Senator Lizarraga in preparation for the Senate meeting a few days before it was tabled,” the BCCI said.

The Chamber stresses that, due to the government’s failure to consult, the Bill does not offer any meaningful change to the labour laws and does not provide employers or employees any additional right or discretion.

“Given the fact that many emergent issues caused by the pandemic have magnified the need for updated labour laws, the BCCI calls on the Government of Belize to urgently re-engage and consult with employers’ and employees’ representatives to comprehensively review and modernize the country’s labour laws, which, in their current form, fail to address a host of pertinent concerns of all relevant stakeholders,” the BCCI added.

The Chamber closed by emphasizing that Belize’s labour laws are in dire need of immediate and comprehensive review, and that this review should take a tripartite approach inclusive of government, labour and employers.

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