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Labour Minister confirms stevedores dispute now before labour tribunal, collective bargaining negotiations progressing well

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Posted: Wednesday, August 18, 2021. 10:51 pm CST.

By Aaron Humes: According to Minister for Rural Transformation,  Community Development, Labor & Local Government, Oscar Requena, in speaking to Cabinet this week, negotiations between the Christian Workers Union (CWU) and the Port of Belize over the collective bargaining agreement for the staff of the Port of Belize were progressing steadily towards a successful outcome.

Conversely, the matter involving the stevedores and their plight for compensation for the revenues they earned loading sugar exports was now before the Labour Tribunal.

The CWU has been puzzled by the Labour Department removing itself from the negotiations at a critical juncture and by its asking them to withdraw their (already expired) 21 day notice of industrial action. The Union has refused, maintaining that it wants the Department there as an honest and impartial referee.

The Union is fighting for a compensation package for stevedores affected by the partial move of sugar exports to Big Creek Port and the rosters of substitutes in stevedore gangs.

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