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Public Service Union reaffirms support for industrial action at AGM

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Posted: Sunday, May 30, 2021. 3:57 pm CST.

By Aaron Humes: By official communique, the Public Service Union (PSU) reported on its 99th Annual General Meeting held virtually and in person this weekend.

The Union’s membership affirms, in its words, that “the PSU maintains the trade dispute with the Government of Belize alive and until such time that the impasse is resolved. As such, legally and internationally recognized industrial actions against the Government of Belize continues.”

The Union also rejected in its current form the proposed Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of Belize, which fixes the end of appointments to major boards with the dissolution of Parliament, and would affect the Belize Advisory Council, the Elections and Boundaries Commission, the Public Services Commission, and the Security Services Commission.

The Government proposed this amendment in advance of issues with members of these boards and particularly the Election and Boundaries Commission and Public Services Commission refusing to step down upon national elections last year.

The PSU says the amendment would “further politicize” these bodies, and such politicization “can lead to the disappearance of an apolitical and competent civil service, police department, coast guard service, and military, the disenfranchisement of voters, the erosion of competitive elections, and ultimately the weakening of our democracy. With the guidance and input of members, the PSU will therefore act accordingly.”

The PSU heard from fellow unionist and president of the Christian Workers’ Union, Evan “Mose” Hyde, who spoke about the power of trade unions and harnessing that power for good.

As previously reported, elections were held for the leadership of the Union, won uncontested by Dean Flowers. He will serve for two years in the first instance along with the rest of the executive except for the first vice president and trustee who will face re-election at next year’s AGM.

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