Government Responds to DPSU Salary Raise Demands

The Dominica Public Service Union (DPSU) held a meeting with its members on Wednesday November 21st, where one of the outcomes was the rejection of the Government’s proposal of a 1%.

The DPSU also gave the Government a deadline of December 14th 2012, to come to a mutual agreement in salary negotiations.

However the Government has stuck to its position so far on the 1% increase.

In a statement released on Thursday November 22nd, the Government stated in accordance with its mandate, has been negotiating with the Dominica Public Service Union and other public service unions in good faith, in an effort to arrive at a conclusion of negotiations for a Collective Bargaining Agreement for the second and third year of the 2009/2012 Triennium.

It also said having agreed on a 3% increase for the first year 2009/2010, as well as other non-salary benefits, and 1% increase for the second year 2010/2011, negotiations focused on the third year of the triennium in respect of which Government offered 1% increase and the union, at the negotiating table, countered with a 2% increase.

The Government’s Negotiating Team (GNT), was not in a position to accept the union’s request for a 2% increase, and in an effort to seek to bring negotiations to a conclusion, undertook to examine the union’s proposal for additional non-salary measures if the union were to accept 1% for the third year.

Having emerged from the fiscal crisis of 2002 to 2004 and having had to take exceptional fiscal measures, including a stabilization levy of 4% and 3% and a reduction of public service salaries, wages and allowances of 5%, the Government cannot now take steps in respect of salaries/wages and conditions of service which are non-sustainable and which could contribute to driving the country back into a fiscal crisis.

In that regard, note should be taken of developments in the region and further afield where, in an attempt to cope with the fiscal and economic crisis, Governments are forced to institute measures resulting, not only in increased taxation, but in reduced expenditure including a reduction in the size of the Public Service and a reduction in the salaries and pensions of Government employees.

Consequently, Government is cautious about approving any additional measures that would cause the country’s fiscal and economic position to reach a precarious level and so affect the lives and livelihood of the citizens of the Commonwealth of Dominica.

This information is being provided to ensure that the Government’s position on the matter of conclusion of wage and salary negotiations for the 2009/2012 Triennium is widely communicated and understood.

© 2012 SAT Telecommunications Ltd.

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