Minimum Wage (Yes) Timing (No?)

Whether studying the issue in the classroom or conversing in a rum shop the amount and timing of the implementation of a national minimum wage generates robust discussion in any country. Pros and cons are easy to find on both sides of the contentious issue.

The Barbados government some suggest are moving like the proverbial bull in a china shop to implement a minimum wage of $8.50, up from $6.25 with security guards to get $9.25 to take effect on All Fools Day 2021. The trade unions are saying it is too low and it should be implemented without delay. Some in the private sector suggest it is too high and the date of introduction is too aggressive.

This government’s decision to increase the minimum wage is commendable and long overdue. The evidence support in the last 5 years there has been significant upward movement in the rate of inflation and the Retail Price Index supports Barbados being an expensive place to live.

The concern by parties of the dispassionate kind entering the debate is not the amount of the minimum wage being introduced but its timing. Moving from $6.25 to $8.50 is significant. Its introduction must be weighed against how the market is likely to respond. Unfortunately this is an unknown. After more than 10 years of a struggling economy many businesses are operating with depleted cashflows. Bear in mind COVID 19 would have exacerbated stress to the profit and loss of many businesses. It is easy for some to sit in the armchair and make the uninformed assumption that all businesses make money. Many operate at the margins.

On the biscuit and cheese side of the discussion, the data supports those earning at a subsistence level must be experiencing an enormous challenge. The obvious position is that a caring society must find ways to support the most vulnerable. The blogmaster will not join the politically motivated and uninformed crews by shouting the minimum wage should be hiked to $10.00 and to hell with considering the consequences. Many debating the issue are unaware this is a debate raging in many countries including the most developed.

It may be useful for the calculus used by the technicians to be made public. The majority of Barbadians will not understand it but it make help to deflate the emotional arguments that a national minimum wage amount is not determined by pulling from a hat.

It seems the majority of opinion from the private sector is that the timing is bad given the vagaries of market of the last 13 years and the consequential negative impact. From the view of trade unions and under-represented workers, now is the best time because of the current state of things.

In is against this background the government has had to make a tough decision.

The blogmaster is always amused when decisions – as in this case moving forward with the implementation of a minimum wage is made – several interest groups will make themselves heard post facto. What is the purpose of the tripartite arrangement (Social Partnership) we beat our chest again? The discord the many dissenting views must cause the public does not help to inflate confidence into the Barbados space. In a situation like this why the social partnership could not have agreed to a communique registering the different concerns after discussing government’s decision to move ahead? It seems all issues in the country have to be resolved after a predictable adversarial process. Historically this has not been the Barbados way.

Whether the government folds to the request of private sector to suspend the hike in minimum wage or not, there is a problem to solve.

How do we (society) protect the vulnerable and marginalized worker in the society at a difficult time.

How does government implement a minimum wage policy to equatable redistribute income in the society.

So far the statement on the matter from Andrew Bynoe of A1 supermarkets is one of the more sensible ones registering with the blogmaster.

I would even advocate moving to $10 an hour to somebody who works for 40 hours, so they would have a gross take-home pay of $400. However, having said that, the cost of living has to be addressed, because for businesses to be able to support the minimum wage up to $10, we have to look at the other areas of costs that affect the running of businesses…Employees would have to honour efficiency and higher productivity within the workplace…

Andrew Bynoe

353 comments

  • @CA
    You lost me. More details are needed.
    Scrap the minimum wage. Give everybody $50/week and all problems are solved?

    I do not understand the CA plan. I see that others who have more knowledge in this area are also puzzled.

    Like

  • NorthernObserver

    @TheO
    Think Coobah.
    Call it the silent Revolution.

    Like

  • Critical Analyzer

    @ Artax March 31, 2021 12:14 PM

    >
    Are you suggesting government should subsidize a stipend at the expense of taxpayers, thereby absolving the private sector of their responsibility to pay adequate wages?

    Government’s is giving all Bajan citizens aged 18-67 a stipend regardless of employment status. All working people will be charged a levy fixed or otherwise to cover the costs of paying every citizen their stipend.

    Are you suggesting one of the underlying objectives of a taxpayer financed stipend is forcing employers to INCREASE wages? But, according to you, wouldn’t an increase wages result in a corresponding increase in inflation?

    Right now, people accept slave wages because that is the only way they can legally put something on the table daily. The stipend gives unemployed people the option to decline low paying job offers without the risk of starving or having to depend on the generosity of others to eat and find bus fare to go job hunting.

    So, rather than seek employment, people will be happy to survive on a weekly $50 stipend?

    If they currently cannot survive on what you call “starvation wages,” I’m wondering how they will survive on $50 per week……. without begging?

    The money is too low to discourage people from seeking employment but it is enough of a subsidy to allow them to feed themselves and pay for one or two bus trips to go find work or or otherwise. Some people will even be skilled enough to turn that money into an investment in a small business venture.

    Like

  • Critical Analyzer

    @TheOGazerts March 31, 2021 1:47 PM
    My plan is all about giving every last Barbadian of working age the equivalent of bus fare and lunch money whether they are working or not. The working people will reimburse government via the tax with a little extra to cover the stipend paid to those not working.

    This is a worked example that might help. Let us assume we have 100,000 bajans of working age with 20,000 of those unemployed and the stipend is $50 per week.

    This works out to $5,000,000 paid out in stipends to the 100,000 bajans. The working bajans will bear the full cost of the stipend so the 80,000 working bajans will pay $62.50 levy that week.

    Hence the non-working bajans would get the full $50 subsidy to help them survive while the working bajans with pay $12.50 net since they also go the $50 as well ($62.50-$50.. = 12.50).

    There will be less pressure on the government’s welfare systems leaving it to focus on the ones really in need yet not put too much tax pressure on the working population.

    Hope that clarifies my unique position on the problem.

    Like

  • CA

    Find other work where?

    i would thinkm there would be better off working for the “starvation wages” only used $50/we from it and save the balance. this would give them a better chance of more bus fare to look for other jobs or more money(in a shorter time frame) to turn into their investment.

    In a nut shell work for the starvation wages only for a period of time as a stepping stone.
    Why burden the tax payers so of who will end up only working for starvation wages if any more “taxes” is take for what they are now making ?

    Like

  • Critical Analyzer

    @ john2 March 31, 2021 2:52 PM

    Working for starvation wages is like being an indentured slave and only serves to keep people in the poor cycle because they are working so many hours just to barely survive, they don’t have the time or energy to pursue other possibilities.

    The subsidy give them some breathing room by taking some of the pressure off allowing them to pursue ways to advance. e.g. They might be able to go do a course to further their education or try offering a service without the need to seek startup capital while surviving enough to eat until it catches on.

    We all pay for it in one way or the other whether we realize it or not. Either upfront or later to support charities, welfare and justice systems after the problem has deteriorated to that stage which is much more costly the worse it gets.

    Like

  • Critical Analyzer March 31, 2021 2:18 PM

    RE: “Government’s is giving all Bajan citizens aged 18-67 a stipend regardless of employment status. All working people will be charged a levy fixed or otherwise to cover the costs of paying every citizen their stipend.”

    By “regardless of employment status,” do you mean whether people are employed or unemployed….. or only persons in specific categories of employment (e.g. janitorial services, gas attendants, shop assistants, etc.), would be entitled to the stipend?
    If not, then, would there be an earnings threshold? In other words, would the stipend be paid to employed individuals earning less than a specific amount weekly, biweekly or monthly? Let’s say ‘for argument’s sake,’ $300 per week or $1,300 per month?
    But, remember, you also mentioned “ALL working people will be charged a levy” to finance the stipend. And, ALL working people would include those individuals receiving the stipend.

    RE: “Right now, people accept slave wages because that is the only way they can legally put something on the table daily. The stipend gives unemployed people the option to decline low paying job offers without the risk of starving or having to depend on the generosity of others to eat and find bus fare to go job hunting.”

    What you seem to be suggesting is, unemployed Tom should refuse a $250 per week job, in preference for a $50 stipend. But, wouldn’t he faced the same difficulties you outlined above, if he’s receiving the stipend?

    RE: “The money is too low to discourage people from seeking employment but it is enough of a subsidy to allow them to feed themselves and pay for one or two bus trips to go find work or or otherwise. Some people will even be skilled enough to turn that money into an investment in a small business venture.”

    On one hand, “the money is TOO LOW to discourage people from seeking employment,” but on the other, it is ENOUGH to “give unemployed people the option to decline low paying job offers?”

    If Tom accepted the $250 per week job, couldn’t he invest a percentage of his earnings into a small business venture as well? Couldn’t he, for example, take up backyard gardening, raise a few chickens, sell souse on Saturdays, etc?
    Uh mean, if he could do what you’re saying with $50, then, imagine what more he would achieve with an additional $200.

    Critical Analyzer, I’m not convinced you’ve ‘critically analyzed’ your proposal.

    Like

  • Got people in Barbados suffering RH bad and need the kind of immediate financial support to get their feet off the ground
    Meanwhile govt playing political stunts increasing wages when almost half the population unemployed and in no way would that the increase help them with immediacy
    Govt rather than offer an economic stimulus which would be beneficial to all
    Govt makes a decision within a hostile economic environment with punishing effects for the economy and the workers

    Like

  • Ok boss

    Seem like you want government to subsize some from the cradle to the grave

    That ain’t how I learn it – sitting down waiting in government or anyone else for that matter. And some start families at early age etc
    Government/tax payers is already subsidizing education all the way through
    Healthcare etc
    Why not just go full communist?
    Everyone work for the state and the state look after everyone needs?

    I started fast food then security at night and classes during the day. I know Barbados is not USA but still …..
    There are a lot out there that don’t want to further their education

    Like

  • Critical Analyzer

    @Artax

    Your guy Tom getting paid $250 a week is not pocketing all that money because there are still expenses like bus fare, lunch, etc. and there is also a cost in less time to pursue his other money making possibilities. Currently, your man Tom only has one option and that is to take the job even though he knows it is not worth the expense and time he puts in.

    However, if he knows he has the guaranteed $50 option each week, he might decide, I can take the freedom in time that gives me and spend those hours I would have spent slaving on that job trying to do my own thingf or going on that 3 months course only offered during the day when I would have been at work to better my qualifications and get a proper job.

    Like

  • Any population who can agree to a govt giving them a dry bone to suck on is deserving of the govt they have
    How in heaveans name can people agree to a paltry wage increase in an economic environment that is less favorable to providing a level of economic comfort for them
    But however in Barbados a govt and its economic gurus many who are making above and beyond top dollar gives govt the go ahead to implement a dry bone policy for workers to chew on
    Lawd hav merci

    Like

  • Critical Analyzer

    @John2 March 31, 2021 3:56 PM

    Government already subsidizing even in the USA. All governments choose to subsidize what gets them more votes.

    Governments currently select who gets support and who does not get support by making them jump through hops to get enough to survive.

    I’m saying we give everybody of working age just enough to survive and keep their dignity but not so much that they don’t need to seek work.

    Once people know they have enough to survive if they use it wisely, that leaves them free to better themselves, chart their own course, cover their own subsidy and contribute to the subsidy for others currently like they once were.

    Like

  • The minorities have been burdening the BLACK TAXPAYERS for 54 years, they can’t catch a break, don’t hear anyone complaining when both governments pick up the people’s money by the hundreds of millions of dollars and give to them, or take the NIS pensioners money and give them by the tens of millions to build clubhouse and dazzling swimming pools for racists up Apes Hill…did i mention that the new owners dug up the pretty pools and about to knock down the clubhouse and put offices, all the pretty little malls gotta go…..well that is the Black population’s tens of millions of dollars GONE DOWN THE DRAIN….and they could not even visit up there….i saw the place, very impressive…

    ..and let’s not talk about the 1 BILLION DOLLARS they embezzled/stole in VAT, again the people’s money…that Mia wrote off, because neither DBLP government collected it from the thieves in at least 2 decades….

    talk about that…any money taxpayers or pensioners get from the treasury or pension fund…IT’S THEIR MONEY…..and they are ENTITLED…government don’t have shit, that’s why they beg for votes to get close to the people’s money.

    Like

  • Do we have details the number of people who are affected by the minimum wage? The vast majority of the workforce if one were to guess earn above the minimum wage.

    Like

  • In this hostile economic environment the needs of the people becomes a priority
    Have govt given thought to how many people can’t afford the basic supplies for their little ones because there is no money coming into their households
    A moral duty should be applied given the unprecedented circumstance
    A moral duty pressed down and shaken together which demands and convict govt to help its people
    How can govt not see and hear the cries of many
    It just not sufficient to say or belive or think that the people would get through these hard ships all by themselves
    Fun Christ sake may I ask .is a smoke and mirror policy built on a paltry wage increase enough when people are on the brink.of poverty

    Like

  • @ Critical AnalyzerMarch 31, 2021 4:13 PM

    On paper, you proposal- with its ‘lite’ shade of the Scandinavian model- seems reasonable but at the same time unrealistically puzzling.

    What you are proposing is a form of what the British would call the ‘Dole’ but without the other benefits needed to live like ‘rent-free’ housing and exemption from council taxes.

    But why Bds$50.00 p/w? Why not per day?

    $50,00 p/w cannot buy even sea crab shite in Barbados. Some people might be better ‘employed’ working at Bush Hill and other ‘hotspots’ at night

    Are you taking into consideration the administrative challenges involved in distributing to $50.00 p/w to those thousands of unemployed people who live day-by-day, cheek-by-jowl in cramped housing situations and with little or no access to the ‘modern’ financial and banking system?

    The question still remains:
    Are the ‘better-off members’ of the society prepared to underwrite through additional taxes on their incomes the high cost of living suffered by their ‘worse-off’ brothers and sisters?

    Like

  • BTW…am so happy to see the sellout negros from various parliaments are being THROWN TO THE WOLVES….that’s the price of selling out Black/African people..

    Like

  • Critical Analyzer March 31, 2021 4:13 PM

    RE: “Your guy Tom getting paid $250 a week is not pocketing all that money because there are still expenses like bus fare, lunch, etc. and there is also a cost in less time to pursue his other money making possibilities.”

    True. But, a guy receiving the stipend won’t be “pocketing all that money” either, because, according to you, he would also incur expenses such as “bus fare to go job hunting, lunch” and personal expenses as well.

    RE: “Currently, your man Tom only has one option and that is to take the job even though he knows it is not worth the expense and time he puts in.”

    How could Tom be left with the only option of taking the job when, according to you, “The stipend gives him the option to decline (it)?”

    RE: “However, if he knows he has the guaranteed $50 option each week, he might decide, I can take the freedom in time that gives me and spend those hours I would have spent slaving on that job trying to do my own thing or going on that 3 months course only offered during the day when I would have been at work to better my qualifications and get a proper job.”

    But, Critical, for several years people “spent hours slaving in jobs” and after work, attend ‘evening classes’ at the ‘O’ Level Institute, BCC and UWI, “to better their qualifications and get a proper job.” as opposed to lazing about waiting on a $50 handout to complete a “3 month course.”
    Additionally, several people have pursued “other money making possibilities” while being employed full time.

    All it takes is being determined and dedicated to achieve the goals and objectives you set for yourself.

    Like

  • TOM would take the $50 then go work his minimum wage job and probably do his side hussle if the first two is still not enough money,

    The best qualifications you need in Barbados that will garantee you a well paying job is to “know” someone in position

    Like

  • Critical Analyzer

    @Miller March 31, 2021 5:42 PM
    The Nordic Model and DOLE in the UK to understand what you were referring to.

    My proposal only goal is to give every bajan of working age a stipend to ensure they can buy enough food to not go hungry or need to beg for bus fare if they have to go somewhere and have not income at all.

    Administration is simple, everyone would be entitled to automatically receive it at 18 and stopped at 67, death or leave Barbados. Every working person would pay the same levy which will keep the fund revolving from week to week and operating at zero profit. Distribution of the funds can be handled by special money cards that will be automatically topped up or credited to a bank account if they so desire.

    Someone with larger problems like no place to live, can’t pay their rent, lost their house or can’t support their children will still need to go to the usual welfare and social care systems for assistance.

    Like

  • Critical Analyzer

    @john2 March 31, 2021 6:58 PM

    Under my system, Tom will be paying back that $50 plus a little extra in the form of a levy on his minimum wage to put back into the fund since he is actively working and would not need that $50 any longer.

    Only people truly not working or doing a side hustle will be able to pocket the full $50 each week but that problem already exists with NIS and PAYE so that is nothing new and would need to be addressed if it causes a large disparity between the stipend and the levy.

    Tom now has some flexibility to put more effort into his side hustle if his minimum wage job is taking too much time away from building up his side hustle into a money earner because the $50 per week might not be much but at least it will help keep him fed till he can get his venture going or find a new job if the venture fails.

    Like

  • @CA
    “This is a worked example that might help. Let us assume we have 100,000 bajans of working age with 20,000 of those unemployed and the stipend is $50 per week.”

    For the 20,00, that’s an automatic $52M per year that the government would have to find and spend regardless of the state of the economy.

    I was taking you seriously until I realized you were supporting a $1.25/hour minimum wage. Do you think someone can live on $50/week, catch bus, buy lunch and personal items and pay for training?

    Like

  • How is 8.50 going to help the thousands unemployed presently
    Mia really teking bajans fuh fools and making nufff mock sport at them
    The truth of the matter so many are unemployed that many of them would not see one nickle of that wage increase
    Mia told the people to give she de vote and watch muh
    But it seems like no one took her seriously
    Cause plenty bull sh.it she has done and got away

    Like

  • You seem to think that a minimum wage of $8.50 is too little and, at the same time, raising the minimum wage is not good for the economy.

    You can only be ‘spot on’ for one of those positions.

    “The truth of the matter so many are unemployed that many of them would not see one nickle of that wage increase”
    When you figure when an unemployed man get a wage increase, please share.

    Like

  • Critical Analyzer

    @TheOGazerts March 31, 2021 7:56 PM

    It is not a minimum wage nor meant to replace everything a job provides. Its sole purpose is to put some sort of money in the pockets of people who have none at all to prevent them from having to beg for food or commit crimes to get food. People can usually get a roof over their head but food can be a major problem since that is a daily need.

    52 million a year to support 20,000 unemployed people out of 100,000 sounds large initially but that works out to each of the other 80,000 working people paying $650 per year or approximately $55 per month to cover them and that is at a 20% totally unemployment rate.

    Having to deal with a long term struggle to get food daily is a real blow to one’s self esteem and leads to other societal ills. i.e. country stability, crime that will cost more than that.

    Like

  • Critical Analyzer

    @TheOGazerts March 31, 2021 8:59 PM

    One thing not being considered is how much of a ripple effect increasing the minimum wage is going to have on other slightly higher paying jobs. Is the pay for those jobs going to forced to increase.

    Personally I think the focus needs to be placed on eliminating worker exploitation. Solving that will address the underemployed wages problem we have.

    Like

  • Disgusting Lies & Propaganda TV

    Re David March 29, 2021 4:15 AM

    The findings of the Minimum Wage Board should really put the specific amount of 8.50/hr min wage in its true perspective. The fact that it is even below their 10/hr recommendation and even below the 12/hr (inflation adjusted) “living wage” just convinces me more that the $8.50 should be implemented sooner rather than later. I may be a little sensitive to timing (in that i would have considered an additional 3-6 months after April 1st) but I don’t support it delayed until Jan 2022 (as Edward Clarke was suggesting). THAT would be taking a joke too far.

    My reasoning supporting the specific increase is as follows:-

    1) Govt is looking for ways to stimulate the economy post lockdowns, post COVID-19 pandemic. To put it simply, businesses can only survive if there is spending in the economy. The consumer plays just as important a role in the economy as the supplier. Min wage workers constitutes a small part of consumers. In a sense govt is trying to increase their participation in the economy by increasing their ability to spend.

    2) Inflation raises OTHER COSTS of doing business, wages can be lumped into those costs. It is a cyclic effect. Businesses usually respond to inflation by raising their prices, labour responds by requesting wage increases to deal with increased prices, wages subsequently increase. For most economies once wage rates closely matches inflation rates there is no adverse effect to the economy or to individual businesses as profit margins are maintained. Only those businesses that have employees working below 8.50/hr would be directly affected in the short term. The private sector is giving the perception that it would be a large shock to the “cost of doing business”. The point here is that we are dealing with NARROW BAND of the minimum wage and not all wages. The 8.50\ hr rate is below the inflation adjusted amount, it still suits businesses more than the worker, but is probably considered due to the economic effects of COVID-19.

    3) the 75% ($1.50) increase in bus fare in 2019 was REASON ENOUGH to raise the minimum wage. It is a cost that those earning minimum wage mostly pays and CANNOT reasonably avoid paying with a cheaper alternative. Pre 2019, bus fare for the purpose of GETTING TO & FROM WORK ONLY was $2 x 2 x 5 = $20 (2 bus daily for 5 days work week) or $40 (4 buses daily). Post 2019 it is
    3.5 x 2 x 5 = $35 (2 buses) or $70 (4 buses). That is a max $30 increase in bus fare out of a min wage of $6.50 x 40 hrs = $260 that hasn’t changed since 2012. The point here is that the increase in min. wage is 2 years OVERDUE.

    4) It has been 9 years since the last increase in minimum wage. The party in power addressed the minimum wage as a “manifesto promise” in 2018. This govt announced as recently as Dec 2020 that the minimum wage would be “addressed” by April 1, 2021. The point here is that this should constitute reasonable notice and reasonable expectation that a min wage raise was coming in the near term. The private sector probably dismissed it as “politicking”.

    5) Businesses would have benefitted from the reduction in corporate tax rates in 2019/2020. This would have given them more “financial space” to handle increased costs and “erosion” in profits. The point here is that this financial space wasn’t even needed if the normal inflation- price- profit relationship was maintained.

    Liked by 1 person

  • Pingback: Increase in National Minimum Wage, after 9 Years | Barbados Underground

  • NorthernObserver

    “How is 8.50 going to help the thousands unemployed presently”
    possibly the only meaningful point you have made thus far.
    Neither will $10 or $12/hr?
    I suspect, the oppositionists view, is the increase in min. wage, will reduce the people rehired, as it will cost employers more. However, historical evidence, is employers will rehire when they need people, and they have a tendency to go low pay, because the supply of persons willing to work, exceeds the jobs available. Thus, this is the perfect time for an increase? The ‘most advantage’ they can take is 8.50. It is a societal benefit.

    Like

  • angela cox March 31, 2021 8:18 PM

    RE: “How is 8.50 going to help the thousands unemployed presently.”

    Are you assuming “the thousands unemployed presently” were ALL working for a minimum wage when they were employed?

    But, won’t the $8.50 help them when they REGAIN employment?

    And, more importantly, won’t “$8.50 HELP the thousands EMPLOYED PRESENTLY” that are earning a minimum wage?

    RE: “The truth of the matter so many are unemployed that many of them would not see one nickle of that wage increase.”

    If you had made the above comment today, we would’ve reasonably assumed it was an ‘April Fool’s’ practical joke on your special day and not take you seriously.

    Like

  • Mia delivered the first April.fools joke of the year for barbadians
    8 .50 per hr for low end wager

    Let’s look at how that money can be spent
    Gas 1 gallon 6.00
    A loaf of bread 3.00
    What do the low end wager has left

    Ok bus fare 6.00 dollars per day
    What does the low end wager has left

    Unemployed low end wager Zero wages

    Biggest All fool joke ever
    A political dry bone tossed out for the masses to fight over

    Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha

    Like

  • Ha. Ha. Happy birthday Mari

    Like

  • John2
    Happy birthday to u too Fool

    Like

  • Coxy began her joke with, “8.50 per hr for low end wager.”

    “To get cheap laughs” and “score cheap political points,” according to Geoffrey Chaucer, ” and thoughte she wolde amenden al the jape,” to illustrate “how that money can be spent,” by DEDUCTING, “Gas 1 gallon 6.00, a loaf of bread 3.00, and bus fare 6.00 dollars PER DAY,”………

    ……….. ALL from ONE HOUR’S PAY ($8.50).

    And, then she asked, “what does the low end wager has left,” while purposely IGNORING a working day is 8 hours, hence, the other 7 hours @ $8.50 = $59.50, in the process.

    The ‘punch line?’……. “Ok bus fare 6.00 dollars PER DAY” from ONE hour’s pay.

    Surely all on BU would agree that, in her April 1, 2021 5:35 AM contribution, Coxy began her special day by delivering the “Biggest All fool joke ever.”

    Like

  • Frightening
    Power corrupts but absolute power corrupts absolutely

    Too much power- Atherley
    By Randy Bennett
    Opposition Leader Reverend Joseph Atherley believes too much power is being placed in the hands of Prime Minister Mia Mottley.
    In an interview with Barbados TODAY, Atherley pointed out that several pieces of legislation had recently been passed giving the PM an inordinate amount of power.
    He said the most recent example was an amendment to the Emergency Management Act last year, which gave Mottley unprecedented authority under the COVID-19 directives.
    A section of that legislation gives Government the power to temporarily confiscate land or buildings if deemed necessary in its fight against COVID-19.
    The leader of the People’s Party for Democracy and Development (PdP) said while he understood the reason behind the directives, he was opposed to the Prime Minister’s overwhelming power.
    “The Emergency Powers Act of the 1930’s gives power to the Cabinet of Barbados, the Government through the Cabinet of Barbados to enact certain directives in a state of emergency. If you check the Emergency Powers Act, not the Emergency Management Act which they passed last year, you will see that when it comes to appropriating people’s land that is prohibited in that legislation.
    “What they have done is to insert a clause 6 and this clause 6 was inserted after the debate had commenced on the floor of the House and after I had replied to the Attorney General. They then sought to insert this amendment, clause 6, which allows the Cabinet of Barbados to give all of its power to the hands of the Prime Minister, one single individual,” Atherley explained.
    “So you have a situation now where the Prime Minister at her own discretion, without reference to Cabinet, can commandeer, requisition, acquire, take over your property, simply by saying that in relation to COVID she needs to have that property for whatever purpose and it does not say for how long.
    “It is alright to tell a fella that you have to be in your house by 6 o clock; it is alright to tell a fella that you can’t go to church on certain days; it is alright to tell a business that you have to close, but when you come to property you’re dealing with a constitutionally enshrined right and therefore a single individual should not have the power to do that without reference to Parliament or without reference to court and that is the point.”
    The Opposition Leader said this was evident in recent legislation such as the Public Finance Management Act as well as the Planning and Development Act, which gives the Prime Minister the final say in town planning authorization.
    “Now you have to look at that in the context of what has been happening recently. In several pieces of major legislation that have come to Parliament in the last two years, a lot of power is concentrated in the hands of the Prime Minister and I have repeatedly spoken to that,” he insisted.
    Atherley said Attorney General Dale Marshall was merely engaging in semantics while addressing the nation in a press conference last night.
    Marshall assured that Government had no intention of taking advantage of Barbadians.
    The AG said: “The Government of Barbados is constrained by its Constitution. We cannot and will not take anyone’s property without compensation.
    You will notice that the order does not say we will acquire it, it says requisition which suggest and which conveys the impression that for as long of a period of time that is needed the Government may be required to take extraordinary steps and access facilities and assets that it does not have in its control.”
    (randybennett@barbadostoday.bb)

    Like

  • READ AGAN..

    “So you have a situation now where the Prime Minister at her own discretion, without reference to Cabinet, can commandeer, requisition, acquire, take over your property, simply by saying that in relation to COVID she needs to have that property for whatever purpose and it does not say for how long.”

    danced RIGHT AROUND THE CONSTITUTION…which they thought no one would find the parts of the laws in the document they hid for decades..

    “The AG said: “The Government of Barbados is constrained by its Constitution. We cannot and will not take anyone’s property without compensation.”

    this liar…they have done JUST THAT for over 50 YEARS…so having a law in place will make them shy……to grab what they have always grabbed from the eldely and their beneficiariies and leave them in generational poverty…

    Like

  • But yuh see here in Barbados political self interest takes precedent
    Atherely lone voice would not make a difference until govt use the law against one of their own
    Barbados is fast becoming a lawless state grounded in rules that goes against the Constitution and Barbadian seem to like it so

    Like

  • William Skinner

    @ WURA
    I recently stated that in our system of government, any party with a two third majority , is in effect a dictatorship because it can discard the constitution at will.
    Here , we have an administration with almost absolute power. I remember, Errol Barrow on the verge of being returned to “ power” openly saying , at a public meeting opposite government headquarters on Bay Street, that the country may be faced with “ a constitutional crisis” because it appeared that his party may win “ all the seats”. His party did not win all.
    Regardless of what we think about Atherley, he actually did the country a favor by forming the Opposition. By so doing, he appointed Caswell to the senate and we at least have one voice , that was capable of challenging both Mottley and the incompetent AG Marshall. Otherwise , we were , and some say remain , on the pathway to a very sophisticated banana republic.

    Like

  • Nursery owners worried about wage costs, attendance slump

    Article by Anesta Henry
    Published on
    April 2, 2021

    Operators of private daycare and nurseries recording a drastic decline in their student roll numbers due to the COVID-19 pandemic are afraid of what will happen to their businesses now that the minimum wage increase has been implemented since they are already struggling to keep their doors open.

    Public Relations Officer of the Barbados Association of Private Child Care Operators Inc (BAPCCO) Adrian Millington told Barbados TODAY that though the experiences vary amongst the operators, the majority is affected significantly by reduced numbers whether it be as a result of social distancing requirements, or increased unemployment levels across the island. This has resulted in parents not being able to afford nursery fees forcing them to turn to their family members to provide care services.

    “The numbers fluctuate weekly for various reasons. However, the numbers are down drastically for many. Nurseries that pre-COVID-19 had a roll in their 20’s and 30’s and even 40’s and over, now have less than 10 to 20 children in many cases. This struggling sector needs some form of governmental assistance. We are working to get adequate feedback from the operators so that we are better able to get a clearer picture of the current situation,” he said.

    Millington said due to the low attendance being recorded, many operators are feeling the negative effects financially and some have opted to rotate staff in some instances as opposed to laying them off indefinitely. However, he noted that many day care workers have been laid off.

    “Many operators are struggling to make ends meet with regard to paying their rents, mortgages, utility bills etc. Now also the increase in minimum wage will have a significant impact on the viability of these already struggling businesses.

    “We are not against the increase in minimum wage. However, our business model doesn’t permit us the flexibility that most other businesses have as a certain ratio of caregivers to babies, toddlers, always has to be maintained.

    “This automatically caps the earning potential. Many operators who were even struggling before will not be able to pay themselves a salary unless their numbers see a significant increase. However, the prevailing pandemic makes this likelihood even more uncertain,” he said.

    Despite the challenges operators have been facing, the PRO said several employees at nurseries across the island have received the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine. According to Millington, parents can be assured that the COVID-19 protocols are being maintained and followed.
    (anestahenry@barbadostoday.bb)

    Source: Barbados Today

    Like

  • We heard yesterday the security sector that received a hike in minimum to 9.25 are already cutting back hours to maintain payroll cost at pre minimum level.

    Like

  • No one has to care about any of them, cut hours, stop shopping with them, raise prices, stop shopping with them, no liveable wage hike…stop shopping with them and SHUT THEM DOWN….keep and pool ya money in ya pockets and open ya own businesses, ya got options…

    Like

  • “Regardless of what we think about Atherley, he actually did the country a favor by forming the Opposition. By so doing, he appointed Caswell to the senate and we at least have one voice , that was capable of challenging both Mottley and the incompetent AG Marshall. Otherwise , we were , and some say remain , on the pathway to a very sophisticated banana republic.”

    luckily for us Caswell is there or we would not know what they are doing or how they work against the majority population…they are the only one think so much about themselves, everyone i know finds them both repulsive and repugnant….and their banana republic will fall into the same category.

    Like

  • Boy uh tell yuh an issue as critical and of grave importance dealing with the Constitution
    David fly off the fence using a defense strategy taking the topic back to wages
    Mia said to watch her and indeed an issue such as the Constitution bares importance to watch her as she uses every misdirected law to by pass the Constitution
    What a ting foam
    Even the USA govt seems to be watching her every move
    Recently some heads of small island states were invited to the white House meet with the new administration and her name wasn’t even mention as a participant
    Here in Barbados she can do as she pleases and get away
    However there are more and many eyes outside of Barbados who are watching her every one

    Like

  • angela cox April 2, 2021 12:45 PM #: “Even the USA govt seems to be watching her every move. Recently some heads of small island states were invited to the white House meet with the new administration and her name wasn’t even mention as a participant. Even the USA govt seems to be watching her every move.”

    Hmmmm……

    In the interest of clarity, perhaps you could provide BU with the names of “the heads of small island states were invited to the White House meet with the new (Biden) administration.”

    However, I read that, a few days ago, Biden invited 40 world leaders to a virtual ‘Leaders Summit on Climate.’
    Besides Jamaica’s PM Andrew Holness, the only other Caribbean leader invited was Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda, Gaston Browne.

    If this is what you’re referring to, does it mean “the USA govt seems to watching the every move” of the OTHER Caribbean PMs who weren’t invited?

    Or, are you implying the USA was targeting Mottley specifically?

    Also, surely countries such as Australia, France, India, Italy, Japan, China, Nigeria, Germany, Canada, or Brazil cannot be considered as “small island states.”

    So, what exactly is your point?

    But, this isn’t the first time what you’ve suggested occurred. In March 2019, former President Trump held an exclusive meeting with leaders from Jamaica, St. Lucia, Bahamas, Haiti and Dominican Republic to discuss trade, drug trafficking, border security and the political impasse with Venezuela.

    Like

  • If they would stop TIEFING the people’s pension money and acting as though it belong to crooked minorities and is their personal piggy bank to build pretty pools, malls and clubhouse in racist enclaves…that are all about to be TORN DOWN….tens of millions of pensioners money DOWN THE DRAIN….they won’t have to be told this by IDB..

    maintaining yardfowls for political ignorance will also soon be a thing of the past…

    “IDB official says urgent pension reform needed in the C’beanMarlon MaddenArticle by
    Marlon MaddenPublished on
    April 2, 2021
    Urgent pension reform will have to take place in Barbados and other Caribbean states as they continue to witness an aging population and dwindling contributions.

    The reminder has come from Moisés Schwartz, Manager of Institutions for Development Sector at the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), who warned of the inevitable pressure that would be placed on state-operated pension schemes in the Caribbean as a result of changing demographics.

    He was speaking during the 2021 Caribbean Economic Forum series on Thursday night, under the topic: Resilient Institutions and Why They Matter To Me.

    “In the Caribbean, adults aged 65 and older would constitute 20 per cent of the population of Caribbean countries by 2050 or earlier as opposed to the 19 per cent we observe today. So population aging will certainly put pension schemes in the Caribbean under increased pressure in the coming years,” he warned.

    Stating that most regional countries generally maintained a pay-as-you-go pension system where individuals would help fund their own retirement plans, he said such a system was only sustainable with a high percentage of people working.

    Schwartz cautioned that while the issues surrounding pension reform were “difficult” and might not be of immediate urgency to some countries, “ in the coming years governments will need to address this problem and prepare themselves”.

    Like

  • So if they insist on paying the population SLAVE WAGES, refuse to diversify, refuse to allow the population and their families to ADVANCE economically…refuse to stop thieving employers from robbing the fund, how do they expect to maintain a thriving pension fund…

    Like

  • David
    Your thinking which purports that raising wages too high, as is the thinking amongst elite forces in most places, is dated.

    In fact, what happens is that wage earners mostly add economic activity with almost 100 percent of their earnings.

    We never seem to hear these arguments when governments give all manner of economic benefits to their co-conspirators, the economic elites.

    It is the elites who are most likely to generate inflation by increasing their prices in an attempt to recoup lost profits from the past year.

    The thing about our country is that it is always a rightness to kick poor people instead of finding truisms supportive of their plight.

    Our point of departure must be that the elites are always wrong until shown otherwise, everything about them.

    Like

  • I do not know what was the point that was being made, but the level of interaction between folks is at a much higher standard than it was previously.

    Like

  • @Pacha

    The issue is raising wages at the bottom, it will trigger a reaction. You are addressing a dynamic system. Hate to use the word equilibrium again but it is what it is. Man made constructs are never perfect.

    Like

  • David
    Precisely!
    And their imperfections should err on the side of the low waged. Not the oligarchs.

    Like

  • @Pacha

    You pretend not to understand who are the gatekeepers in a capitalist system ?

    Like

  • David

    No. But you presume most times that yours is a democracy as well.

    Democracy, given its best meaning, is about economy and the equitable distribution of resources. That has never happened.

    The ideas can’t comfortably coexist.

    Like

  • This is what’s supposed to happen when public funds are EMBEZZLED….and those who stole the millions/billions go to prison..especially when it contributed to ECONOMIC COLLAPSE of the island…Aruba is even smaller than Barbados, ya don’t hear them blaming Covid for everything, they put the blame right where it belongs on the crooks who ripped off the country.

    https://barbadostoday.bb/2021/04/03/aruba-prime-minister-resigns-amid-investigation-economic-collapse/

    “SOURCE: Reuters — Aruba’s prime minister resigned on Tuesday after prosecutors on the Dutch Caribbean island announced an investigation into one of the parties making up her ruling coalition for suspected embezzlement of funds, the government said in a statement.

    The government of Prime Minister Evelyn Wever-Croes said it had dissolved parliament and would announce a new date for elections soon. Wever-Croes will handle pending government business, including the fallout of the coronavirus pandemic, until a new government is installed.

    “There are times when it is necessary to make difficult decisions, but when one follows the path of integrity …”

    Like

Join in the discussion, you never know how expressing your view may make a difference.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s