As it stands, the Public Service Act is putting undue pressure and strain on some public servants, says the President of the Congress of Trade Unions and Staff Associations of Barbados (CTUSAB).
And Cedric Murrell is calling for changes to how vacancies are filled and for an amendment to the Act.
Speaking at a press conference at CTUSAB’s headquarters this afternoon, Murrell said they would be lobbying to remove the section of the legislation which mandates the advertising of all posts.
“The Public Service Act was amended in 2007 and in that Act it called for a process of selection of persons from permanent employment in the public sector. That said all posts should be advertised and hence competed for by largely interview.
“The rolling out of that has created tremendous difficulties for the public service because the personnel agency is just not equipped, certainly from a manpower point of view, for the volume of the interview process that it would be required to undertake,” Murrell explained.
Additionally, he argued that the process was not the best one for selecting public workers for posts, explaining that in some instances persons had been acting for as long as five or six years and doing a satisfactory job, but were overlooked because they did not do well in the interview.
“And so we have posts in the public service where people are working in them and are vacant for an inordinately long time, in fact, in breach of the very Public Service Act of itself. And so, as a Congress, we are asking that the Public Service Act be amended to remove the need for advertising all posts that are to be filled in the public sector.
“We have tried over time to have the dialogue [with Government] on it and so we are at the point where we are saying, ‘let us cut to the chase.’”
Murrell said the union also wanted to see the Performance Review Development Process rolled out so persons could feel comfortable that the assessment was done with their input. (RB)