On Day 1 of a national shutdown ordered by the National Union of Public Workers (NUPW) reports are that operations at several Government departments have been affected.
While it is still too early to fully assess the impact of the action, when Barbados TODAY visited the Bridgetown Port this morning truck drivers there reported that operations got off to an unusually late start.
Workers were also in and out of various Government departments in the City, with some state-run secondary schools, including Combermere, forced to close early, due to the unavailability of teaching staff.
However, Transport Board buses were still running and the Grantley Adams International Airport remained open, even though union sources indicated that the action was likely to be significantly ramped up tomorrow to include workers at the country’s air and sea ports.
Just yesterday Minister of Labour Dr Esther Byer-Suckoo made it clear that the union’s action could not force Government to pay a salary increase that it simply could not afford.
The NUPW is demanding a 23 per cent pay hike for its workers ,as well as a lump sum coping subsidy of $60 million.