September 30, 2016

GTU to stage further picketing actions

In light of the ongoing conflict between the Guyana Teachers Union (GTU) and the Teaching Service

Past picketing actions by the GTU in front of the TSC building

Past picketing actions by the GTU in front of the TSC building

Commission (TSC), there will be continued picketing until a permanent solution is found.
Despite the matter pending in court, the Union believes it is moving at a snail’s pace and urgent intervention needs to be taken by the relevant authorities.
Representing hundreds of teachers across the country, the GTU is aiming at ensuring that the welfare of these individuals is not violated and hindered from achieving maximum productivity.
The Union has been staging these picketing actions for the past months, after they had found the TSC guilty of breaching the laws in terms of the promotion of teachers.
Considering the actions of the TSC, the Union believes that this has breached the laws regarding teachers, which has caused immense inconveniences.
Speaking on behalf of the Union, General Secretary Coretta McDonald revealed that since minimum efforts are being taken in relation to the conflict, the GTU will fight for their worker’s rights.
This they hope to achieve through protest actions, which will quicken the pace of addressing the matter at hand.
However, McDonald told <<<Guyana Times>>> that a letter was sent to President David Granger on the issue. She said that in response, the President said that consultations will be done with the Education Ministry to resolve the conflict.
Following these consultations, only then the Union would be presented with information on the way forward, McDonald said.
The GTU is however unaware of how long these consultations would take, and therefore will continue their picketing exercises until a resolution is made.
According to information from the Union, they had filed an injunction in the High Court calling for the halt of the promotion sector of public school teachers.
This injunction had applied to the TSC and also the Education Ministry’s School Board Secretariat, but according to reports, the Commission was the only party that didn’t comply.
Subsequent to the restriction, the TSC allegedly bluntly disregarded the calls and went ahead in promoting a Grade C teacher to a Grade B school and a Deputy Head Teacher to another school.
This had caused uproar within the GTU as it saw the action as being impertinent, sparking the picketing action in front of the TSC’s office.
Conversely, the TSC had refuted these allegations, saying that the appointments were not their doing. This led the GTU to file a case against TSC in the court, and the matter is currently ongoing.
Due to the pending court matter, teachers are also extensively affected since there has been a halt to the processing of application forms for promotions.
McDonald told <<<Guyana Times>>> during a recent interview that there are currently no vacancy notices going out, even though this is the period where teachers anticipated promotion forms.
The Union is calling for the Government to completely remove the Commission and replace it, since they stated there is no confidence in the body any longer.
Until this is done, the Union has stated that it will maintain its picketing actions for the rights of teachers across Guyana.
There were plans to hold a nationwide strike to strengthen their calls, but following a meeting with Minister of State Joseph Harmon, this was called off.

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