Submitted by Philip Skeete
I should be grateful if you [BU] would get in touch with Sir Roy and tell him that a strike by the members of the BWU will not cripple LIME operations in 2013. All Sir Roy will be doing is crippling the Barbados economy. LIME’s survival depends on people using cell phones. While the workers are on strike, their idle fingers will be sending text messages to friends and family. Tops-up will be the order of the day.
Pointless boasting that the Union successfully took strike action for 3 weeks against the Telephone Company 31 years ago. Those were the days when radio telephone operators connected people worldwide.Now every home in Barbados has a MagicJack [Skype] and while they are on strike, they will be giving their friends and family a blow by blow commentary on what is going on.
Those were the days when newspapers had to wait hours for Reuters and Associated Press stories. Today, MCTV, Direct TV and Satellite receivers mounted on top of news media houses provide them with data before Reuters or Associated Press can get it right. Remember the 9/11 attacks? FOX News and CNN brought the news into the homes of Barbadians. They didn’t have to wait till the following day like back in 1981 (Bartel strike) to get the news. Every day youngsters watch European football on MCTV or on satellite TV at bars all over Barbados. LIME doesn’t provide these services. Nobody is waiting for an operator to answer the phone at LIME to send a telegram to friends and family overseas, Sir Roy. MagicJack is there for that purpose.
Karib Cable, TeleBarbados and Digicel are there to provide back-up communications for cellphone contacts overseas. Nobody is waiting for the Transport Board to transport their children to and from school. The ZR and Minibus operators will clap their hands. They wouldn’t have to break the laws of Barbados to get a load for the days on which he calls out the Transport Board workers. It is time that Mr. Trotman ponders on these things and don’t make the silly mistakes which he made during the past decade of threatening Sandy Lane, Royal Shoppe, Almond Beach and others with strikes. Has he closed down these operations?
Ask Mr. Trotman if he remembers the days when the Trades Union Congress of England threatened to shut down Ford Motors, the Fleet Street newspapers, bus and railway transportation weekly? Gone are those days. Trade Unions worldwide are redefining themselves. Read the overseas paper Sir Roy. The largest Trade Union ‘UNITE’ in the U.K has started a community membership programme which allows people, not necessarily union members , access to UNITE’s legal help-line, debt counselling and assistance in claiming benefits. Volunteers are asked to contribute 50p per week to help with the programme. This came about because of the massive redundancies in Britain.
Mr. Trotman, you and your policies have become irrelevant in the 21st century. Ask for help from the young IR experts who are frustrating you sitting opposite you at the negotiations tables