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Posted: Tuesday, July 6, 2021. 9:15 pm CST.

By Aaron Humes: Negotiations over a collective bargaining agreement between the Christian Workers’ Union and Belize City Council continue to stall according to CWU president Evan “Mose” Hyde.

In March, the Union publicly appealed for the Council’s negotiating team to present its counterproposal, which it delayed doing until being assured of a second term in office.

Hyde said today that the Council has thrown a monkey wrench into the works by rejecting having a negotiation framework agreement, which Hyde described as standard operating procedure. While the Council weighs the Union’s request to reconsider, there has been no further meetings scheduled.

Despite the unusualness of the procedure, the Union, based on the advice of those it represents according to Hyde, are willing to go ahead: “There’s no scheduled meeting – in fact, what we have said to our members, while we understand how ill-advised it is on both sides; we are setting ourselves up for failure not to have a pre-determined negotiating framework, but guess what, we won’t even have a quarrel over it – at this point in time we have said to our members okay, let’s start negotiating without a negotiating framework agreement, and our reps have said, okay, you do what you have to do.”

This agreement covers the terms of engagement – who participates, how many meetings there will be, whether it would be confidential or not.

The Union was hit by the one-two punch of this rejection and the announcement of the retirement exercise, said Hyde, but it perseveres.

The agreement covers salary increases and other issues of concern for the workers.

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