LABOUR DAY 2022 MESSAGES

The content originally appeared on: INews Guyana

A MESSAGE FROM THE PPP ON THE OCCASION OF LABOUR DAY 2022

Guyanese workers are our country’s most valuable asset and on the occasion of Labour Day, the People’s Progressive Party (PPP) takes this opportunity to extend best wishes to all of them throughout our dear land.

The contributions of our workers to the advancement of Guyana and our collective, progressive future are invaluable and have been the bedrock of the struggles for betterment for all. Our Party salutes and commends them on this international day to recognize and pay homage to their sustained hard work and indomitable spirit.

The PPP-led government takes the opportunity of this occasion to reaffirm our commitment to ensuring that our workers remain our foremost priority and continues to work assiduously to ensure and that their lives and conditions of work continue to be improved. While our Party is aware that there is more to be done, it continues to take multifaceted approaches to ensure the advancement of our workers’ welfare. Through continuous engagement, our Party ensures that their voices are heard and the feedback provided guides policy intervention in their best interest.

The PPP, mindful of contemporary challenges facing our people and nation, commits to working, in consultation with our workers, to advance meaningful interventions to improve their lives, as well as the lives of their families.

To date, in keeping with the Party’s people-centered approach, since taking office in August 2020, the PPP/C Administration has already taken steps to remove burdensome taxes and fees, restore the education cash grant, provide other cash grants, create thousands of jobs have and restore opportunities that allow our workers to elevate their standard of living. Already, our people have benefited from thousands of online scholarships, training opportunities, and the implementation of various programmes and policies to improve the social and physical infrastructure of our nation. These are just part of the PPP/C government’s thrust to better the lives of all of our workers. The immediate re-establishment of the Ministry of Labour upon taking office in August 2020, emphasizes the value our Party and government place on our workers.

Labour Day allows for our workers to rally in solidarity in celebration of their invaluable contributions to national development. Once again, our Party salutes them for their resoluteness and innovativeness in advancing our country.

Best wishes on this day.

PNCR LEADER & LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION LABOUR DAY MESSAGE 2022

Fellow Guyanese, as we gather here, it is with great pleasure that as leader of both the PNCR and the Opposition that I join with you and the rest of the world to commemorate this International Labour/Workers Day.

Today, as was specially identified, is the day to celebrate you, our workers as the creators and turners of the wheels of this economy and to recognize the efforts of your labour. From factory to factory, from field to field, from office to office, the labour of your hands has indeed transformed our country especially during the height of the pandemic and without a doubt kept us safe. It is a fact that without labour, there can be no prosperity or growth. As a philosopher once said, “Labour is what brings the difference in everything, so it’s evident that labour is the game changer of all progress.”

That’s why today we celebrate with pride the sacrifices and contributions made by our working class way back to the time of Hubert Nathaniel Critchlow, the Father of Trade Unionism, who fought relentlessly, paving the way for the many benefits that are being enjoyed today. You would indeed recall the uncertainties and disruptions to our lives over the last eighteen or more months. Nonetheless, we are here a Strong, Dynamic and Resilient group of people who have continued to turn the wheels of production with the hope of being able to secure a better way of life for all peoples of this Great Land of ours.

COVID, as you would know, has done us many wrong—namely, deaths amongst us and also caused everything to stop or to slow down. However, in your simple way you continued to display dedication, commitment and unwavered support while not even being given a moderate recognition. Rather, you were locked out of your places of work, had salary cuts, were threatened with dismissal and left to ponder a path for survival. I must remind all that it was the APNU+AFC Government, who displayed care, concern and that deep commitment when we ordered the closure of all schools across the country. We also instituted curfews and a rotation system in many of the sectors as we sought to find ways and means of ensuring the safety of the working class in unprecedented times. In all of this, the Labour Movement and its members stood with resilience. Therefore, it is for reasons like these and displays of Love for the country that we take time off today to salute you the working class of this beautiful country. Your sacrifices and boldness must never be taken for granted; and you along with your leaders must be shown deep respect and gratitude.

This PPP Government must put its pride and begin the process of reaching out to the leaders to begin the process of Collective Bargaining. They must be cognisant that workers’ rights are human rights and that each worker must be treated equally. Our women and men who serve in every sector must be RESPECTED and given his/her fair share of the pie. Any government worth its salt would quickly seek to engage its labour leaders and put into action the labour conventions that have been signed on to and display some civic responsibility.

Finally, I wish to thank every worker for their unwavering dedication, love and commitment to this country and to say that as a result of your being steadfast and resolute we can achieve much.

So today, as we celebrate you, we do so with pride and a deep sense of commitment, knowing that you are worth CELEBRATING. Happy Labour Day!

Solidarity Forever!

LABOUR DAY MESSAGE FROM THE ETHNIC RELATIONS COMMISSION

The Ethnic Relations Commission, (ERC), extends Labour Day greetings to all workers
throughout the country. The ERC salutes the Guyanese working class who represent different ethnicities and are all a driving force in the economy. Their forebears faced many painful challenges, some insurmountable in their quest for decent work and a living wage.

The Commission joins the social partners represented by government, employers, employees and the trade unions in recognizing those who toil for the mammoth, unending task of social and economic growth; increase in productivity is achieved through their collective efforts.

The past two years of the pandemic has been nothing short of challenging as the working class people had to adjust and adapt to ways of staying productive while being Covid-19 safe. The Commission remains hopeful that the waning pandemic will continue to reduce its morbid effects on the working population for the sake of improved livelihoods.

The labour movement represents an important constituency and the hurdles it faces in the
workplace are brought under focus in the ERC’s desire for a cohesive society. Rapid
globalisation and all its aspects is also confronting the Guyanese working people in the challenge for a living wage.

The ERC, therefore, embraces any initiative to empower citizens of any ethnicity through education and training to prepare them for an accelerating Guyanese economy.

Happy Labour Day to All!

May Day March and Rally are back! – GTUC on Politics and the Working Class

This year the Workers of Guyana will commemorate Labour Day 2022 on Sunday 1st May with a March and Rally. The March, scheduled to begin at 7:30 a.m., will move off from Independence Park through the streets of Georgetown to conclude at Critchlow Labour College, Woolford Avenue for a Rally, which will commence at 10:00 a.m. Speakers at the Rally will be drawn from the Labour Movement.

This year’s theme is, “COVID 19 – Politics and the Working Class.” A theme most fitting to the environment the workers have had to labour through over the last three years, occupational safety and health challenges, inflation, low wages in an oil and gas economy, imposition of wages/salary, contempt for basic rights, exclusion from equal/equitable participation in the nation’s economy and governance amongst other civil, social and political rights violations.

Whereas the Guyana Trades Union Congress remains wedded to the principle of inclusion it can’t help but note efforts being made at the echelons of society to marginalize and discriminate against the working poor and significant sections of society. This policy stands in stark contrast to forging One People, One Nation, One Destiny.

In an oil and gas economy, projected to have a 47 % GDP growth this year, said growth will be meaningless in the absence of a national programme, with the involvement of stakeholders- political and civil society- to realise a meaningful Human Development Index (HDI). Any development that views people/workers as incidental is not development in the 21st century economy where people are placed at the centre.

GTUC calls on the workers of Guyana to mark this labour renewed in the commitment that together we must stand and together we can achieve. Solidarity. Workers of Guyana are called on to reassert their relevance and importance to having a stake and a say in the development of this country, to be treated as Guyanese and benefit from all of Guyana’s resources.