The Barbados Workers Union (BWU) is happy with the outcome of talks today between Chairman of the Transport Board Gregory Nicholls, employees of the United Commercial Autoworks Limited (UCAL) and the union on a new contractural relationship.
Former General Secretary of the BWU, Sir Roy Trotman told Barbados TODAY this evening that the meeting involving Nicholls and the UCAL workers was “a good and useful” one.
“He was able to discuss how he plans to revise and renew the contract of the Transport Board with UCAL to have a better professional working relationship that would provide improved service and a steady, more reliable, contractual arrangement,” Sir Roy who now serves as Special Advisor to the BWU said.
Asked if he was happy with the outcome, the veteran trade unionist replied, “yes. The chairman was forthright. He came across to workers as being ready and willing to have collegial discussions rather than hostile stances, which was what the UCAL was forced to put up with in the recent past.”
Chairman Nicholls told Barbados TODAY afterwards that UCAL will be getting more jobs from the Transport Board as it moves forward with its restructuring programme.
Hours after the UCAL talks, Nicholls met with staff of the Board who packed its recreational room and heard him outline the plans to restructure, cut spending and create new job opportunities for those being retrenched.
Following on from today’s meeting, the BWU will on Sunday meet with the workers at union headquarters, Solidarity House at 4.30 p.m. to explain the Board’s proposal and to formulate a response.
“The Transport Board has proposals that are clearly set out on paper. The Ministry and the Transport Board have some vision regarding what they would wish public transport to look like in the foreseeable future,” Sir Roy told Barbados TODAY.
“So we are meeting with the workers to explain what it is that the Government is putting forward and to give the workers the opportunity for us to put together a workers’ response to those proposals,” he added.
Sir Roy insisted that it is important for the workers to respond since the offers, in some cases, may call for them to be involved in the running of companies similar the UCAL model.
He said on the following Sunday there will be another meeting for those employees who were unable to attend this first session.