A Just and Fair Society – according to the Charter!

Submitted by Steve Prescott LLB (Hon)

Having considered the background I must stand with all those who support the Nurses and offer my 2
cents. There’s a legal and a moral dimension to all this.

It’s not in dispute that any employee who experiences poor working conditions and no pay has a
legitimate right to raise those concerns before a competent employer. A look back in history will put
this strike into context. It spans several years during which the nursing profession has been raising
grievances about pay & working conditions.

As far as I can tell these grievances are not vexatious, frivolous or manifestly unfounded. Mr Bostic
appears to believe they are legitimate. But what is an employee to do if those grievances go
unresolved over any length of time? Any right-thinking employer would know, there will appear a
bright line in the sand – the point at which employees say ‘thus far and no more’. In legal parlance it
would be cited as the straw that breaks the camel’s back.

The point of a grievance process is to act on and resolve the issues it raises in a timely manner.
Hence, I come to this “crisis” with some expertise in labour law. Well drafted employment law should
create balance in the relationship between employer and employee. Any detrimental action against
an employee must be considered objectively against the back drop of reasonableness. It is trite to say
that an employee’s right to strike is a lawful and essential part of developing an organisation’s mind
around the concepts of justice and fairness.

I take my starting point at s2 & s40A of the Trade Unions Act 1964. Since this is available to be read;
I paraphrase it;

Section2, “For the purposes of this Act, the expression “employer” means “the Crown”, with respect
to any person employed in a civil capacity thereunder. The title to section 40A; Adversely affecting
employee or employer on account of trade union activities. s40A. An employer who – (a) adversely
affects the employment or alters the position of a workman to his prejudice because that workman –
ss(ii) being a member of a trade union, which is seeking better labour conditions, is dissatisfied with
his conditions; is guilty of an offence”.

It’s clear their complaints have gone unresolved over several years. The extent to which this inaction
has adversely affected the nurse’s employment is a question of fact and degree. Assuming resolution
of the grievances in favour of the nurses is objectively necessary, then failure to resolve them has
prejudiced the Nurses to the extent that it hastens strike action – which then causes the PM to adopt
a legal footing.

Is it reasonable to reduce the pay of a worker who does not turn up to work? Objectively? Yes. The
bargain struck between employer and employee must be a fair bargain. I doubt any employer
anywhere in the world would pay a person to deliberately not turn up for work. But, that’s only one
side of the employment coin. A fair question to ask is; is it reasonable or even lawful for employees
to suffer hazardous working conditions that may adversely affect their safety and health? Is it
reasonable or even lawful to pay employees sporadically? Objectively, the answer must be no.

Part of the problem here is, this legislation is at odds with the Public Service Act 2007 – the section
the government relies on, s20. This presents a conundrum that needs to be resolved in the courts –
since withholding pay adversely affects employees.

Moreover, if the reports about freezing bank accounts are true then, ladies and gentlemen of the
Republic of Barbados, you don’t need me to tell you that is an absolute violation of the Constitution,
and action within the gift only of lawful authority in pursuit of the proceeds of a crime.
The action taken by the Government toward nurses appears high handed and politically charged.
Why? Because there is still the moral dimension in which it’s worth asking the question; within a
landscape which shows some years of under pay, sometimes no or late pay, poor working conditions,
long hours, increased risk to personal health, and no sign from any Government of positive action to
remedy these matters, is it reasonable to dock their pay and freeze banks accounts?

Now that things have got this far, it seems somewhat churlish that opponents of the strike besmirch
the nurse’s professional integrity for the position they take. The Government appears to have made
their moral responsibility toward their employees subservient to the moral responsibility of Nurses
toward their patients and thereby make State action far less unconscionable; this is wholly unjust and
manifestly unfair. To be clear; a striking nurse does not, by their strike action, say, imply or infer that
they care less about their patients or the State. That is a step to far. No one asked for this pandemic
and nurses have been on the front line fighting it for months – in less than favourable working
conditions. Had their grievances been properly resolved, pre-pandemic, perhaps this action would
never have arisen.

Contractual performance cuts both ways. But for any Government’s inactivity to remedy the Nurse’s
grievances, this action would not have happened. It is neither just nor fair to hold nurses over the
moral ‘barrel’ whilst deliberately, or otherwise, failing to act upon their own legal and moral

Correct me if I’m wrong.

88 thoughts on “A Just and Fair Society – according to the Charter!

  1. In horseracing terminology, CF has a ton of horse but is boxed in. Otherwise know as ‘all revved up with no place to go’. Hold his position and hope the rail opens up?

    • @NO

      With the dissolution there is not official of cabinet to negotiate until January 20, 2022. In the meantime his striking nurses are NOT being paid.

    • The blogmaster warned on the other blog the craft necessary to play the long game when holding a weak hand. Good strategy will win over all other plans every time.

      Hopefully Mia will give the nurses an out for hard times sake.

  2. Since you are on fire today…what about the UWU contingent joining the BWU, getting a 5% increase, and Moore steps down to ‘focus on politics’ vacating the top job. Can you see Caswell in the ‘company car’? Mia likes to silence by bringing others ‘into the fold’.

    • @NO

      Managing thr BWU is more political in decison making than anything else. Caswell is not of the timber required.

  3. Unfortunately Caswell overplayed his hand. Never anticipated this hardball stance.

    I hate politics. I do not like this nasty move by Ms. Mottley at all. She may indeed rid herself of many thorns in her side both within the BLP and without but the people of Barbados will still see themselves as caught between the devil and the deep blue sea.

    She will win by default but it will be a hollow victory, one that only the yardfowls will celebrate.

  4. David,

    Good strategy or nasty strategy?

    The cause of the nurses has been acknowledged by Col. Bostic as a just one. This is no way to deal with citizens who are simply asking for what should be theirs. You want to humiliate and break them? You want them to crawl back with their tails between their legs?


    • @Donna

      In this instance strategy bears no label. Bear in mind Caswell and Bostic are alumni from the same place and could have mustered a deal which did not pass the smell test from the PM. Sadly many issues are not resolved based on whether right or wrong, more to do with how decisions gives weight to solidifying power for those ensconced.

  5. @NO
    “In horseracing terminology, CF has a ton of horse but is boxed in. Otherwise know as ‘all revved up with no place to go’. Hold his position and hope the rail opens up?”

    Nice! Apt.

  6. But David this is about the members? Could the BWU not use a reboot. When you get to a certain age, you have to appreciate the opportunities will be fewer. To besides, while not running for office, he has played ‘politics’ for a while now.

    • @NO

      Of course the union needs a reboot, it is quickly like the others becoming irrelevant. Why do you think the goodly former independent Senator had to run from the BWU when he was the heir apparent before being superseded by Moore with the blessing of Trotman?

      The specter of Trotman still looms large over Harmony Hall.

  7. @ David December 28, 2021 2:49 PM

    The problem is that our population is far too lazy. No wonder our government prefers to contract Chinese with infrastructure and buildings.

    Our government must therefore under no circumstances give in to the extravagant demands of the nurses. We finally need a leader at the top again who will crack down on this. Like our colonial administration did in 1937. I therefore recommend that our government deport the strikers and put in their place 100 African nurses who are not yet so mollycoddled.

  8. David,

    There is right and wrong in EVERYTHING!

    I have no idea why you insist on trying to exclude these events from the moral sphere.

    One can choose to analyse from a power perspective but that does not exempt these actions from analysis from a moral perspective.

    You have chosen one and I have chosen the other.

    Caswell and the nurses are right. Mia, regardless of strategy and power play, is WRONG!

    • @Donna

      You need to understand what is being said- this is how these matters are processed and has nothing to do with what the blogmaster feels.

  9. David,

    Processed by whom? A warped political mind? I thought our aim was to change how these matters are processed?

    We don’t need to narrate how they are processed. We all know the drill. We need to speak more on how they SHOULD be processed.

    FRANKLY, her actions here leave a very bitter taste in my mouth. It is getting more bitter by the day. I do not think the nurses should be treated in this callous manner. Playing hardball should be reserved for workers with unjust or debatable causes. Breaking and humiliating persons who merely demand that they be treated like humans is indeed slavemaster tactics.

    She needs to provide a dignified way out for the nurses.

    Otherwise I don’t think I can vote for this and I cannot vote for the Dems who are bringing back some of the old GANG.

    The devil and the deep blue sea, very depressing.

  10. @Northern, re the blogger @Theo’s point … Apt, indeed was the horse racing analogy.

    However, @David talks of ‘long game when playing a weak hand’ and concluded that good strategy will win over other plans every time…. well, unless this is a endless race there is only so long you can remain boxed in and still expect ro win !

    Unless of course the. winner gets disqualified for some terrible offense…. that’s the only way UWU can win this one … the PM’s strategy is simply too well done.

    And thus @Donna you can hate the process as much as you want but politics is ALL about winning … Machiavelli said so circa 16th century and it’s STILL as bluntly true today.

    In any national political theater with all that power to gain and patronage to dispense there is absolutely no such thing as a “hollow victory”!

  11. @Donna
    This is akin to the US rule they “will not negotiate with terrorists”.
    If the PM does not squash this, whatever you or anybody else deems right or wrong, others will follow. And they will have recent precedent. While the nurses may have a case, what about all the other hospital employees and health care workers, not to mention all front line staff.
    Also, because I see you and others, with the dilemma of if you can’t vote B or D, you staying home. Weren’t you the one concerned about come from awayers, voting to determine your government when we don’t live bout dey. And you are going to abstain? If you wish change, find a third party and give them a vote. This staying home only entrenches the stranglehold the two parties have.
    What incentive is there for anyone to make the effort to run for other than B or D, if it is a foregone conclusion, they cannot even get their deposit back. Staying home doesn’t improve anything?

    • From where the blogmaster sits Caswell’s out would have been to somehow establish a strategic relationship with the union with the largest membership reNUPW. Unfortunately the other unions see Caswell and UWU as a threat added to which he is their biggest critic and rightly so. In the IR world there is a craft to how things get done. Yes @Donna we support the nurses and Caswell but then there is understanding the rules of engagement to achieve the objective.

  12. Ineffective strike

    Political analyst Wickham hits out at Franklyn’s actions
    HEAD OF Unity Workers’ Union, Caswell Franklyn, has been blasted again for leading an “ineffective” nurses’ strike.
    The latest salvo was fired by political analyst Peter Wickham during yesterday’s Down To Brass Tacks on Starcom Network, which focused on the upcoming General Election, as well as the ongoing industrial action.
    Earlier this month, nurses under the Unity Workers’ Union went on strike over the yet enacted COVID-19 safety zones, as well as other grievances such as a lack of supplies. Government severely chastised the action during a pandemic and held talks with the Barbados Nurses Association (BNA) and Barbados Workers’ Union, reaching some agreement not extended to Unity.
    Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley said Government would withhold the striking nurses’ salaries as per protocols in such situations.
    Franklyn later said a mediator had been employed to interact with Government but those talks subsequently fell through. Wickham, who was moderating the call-in programme, said the strike had not been effective and Franklyn was playing to an audience. “Nurses associated with the BNA have gotten things done and grievances [addressed] and they have not gone on strike. Yet he has gone on strike and you are unable to tell me what exactly he has achieved. He hasn’t achieved anything . . . . Caswell has had opportunities to say what he has achieved but he has not because he ain’t achieve nuttin’,” he said.
    When contacted, Franklyn told the MIDWEEK NATION he did not listen to the programme but would not have responded to Wickham anyway.
    “I certainly wouldn’t respond to anything Wickham has to say. If it had come from someone with any credibility, then I would consider it,” he said.
    Wickham said from his limited knowledge of industrial relations practices, strike action was the last resort, and withholding labour as a first resort meant
    there was nowhere else to go.
    “He has flogged the Government first and he is asking questions after about how he wants to sit down and have a negotiation. It doesn’t seem to be working . . . . A good union keeps its members employed and earning a salary. More Barbados Workers’ Union members are continuing to be employed and earning a salary than at the Unity Workers’ Union,” he said.
    He acknowledged Franklyn tended to “shake up things” but asked whether trade unionism had evolved past the point of “theatrics”.
    “I believe an important part of industrial relations is getting the best for your people and I don’t know those people [under Franklyn] have necessarily received the best. Looking out for the interest of workers does not necessarily mean only bargaining for more money, it means looking after their well-being.
    “I think this is the reason why his style of trade unionism, for me, doesn’t always cut it, because there are some environments in which keeping a lot of noise and walking off the job is not going to necessarily achieve certain objectives,” he said, adding all Franklyn did was deprive his nurses of money for Christmas and stall the vaccination programme, leading to vaccines having to be destroyed.
    On WhatsApp, a contributor said it was Franklyn’s stance that had helped to further the cause of the BNA in getting what it wanted, while other callers said Government should import more nurses from the region and leave the striking ones out in the cold. (CA)

    Source: Nation

  13. “I certainly wouldn’t respond to anything Wickham has to say. If it had come from someone with any credibility, then I would consider it,” he said”

    yep…no one responds to low vibration A1 asholes….stay at a higher vibration…another idiot looking for attention….the perpetual narrow minded Slave..

    still trying to figure out what a political scientist is and what exactly is any positive use for them…they always seem to be surprised at this and surprised at that…which means they HAVE NO VISION…but always trying to predict…..pieces of useless graded paper does not given anyone vision…

  14. Northern,

    There was no need to squash anything. She did not have to insist that they return to work first. She could have down with them, ticked off a couple of their grievances to show good faith and then asked them to return to work while negotiating a timeline within which other grievances would be addressed one by one.

    Same thing for any others who have legitimate and longstanding grievances. One needs to acknowledge and make a start.

    Do you really think Caswell and the nurses expected to have all those grievances addressed under these dire circumstances?

    They are not stupid. They were just tired of being ignored.

    Win:win is not that hard really, with the right attitude.

    Look at the list and you’ll see that some of them could have been done.

    Heck, I bet I could have got a settlement!

    Bajan workers want to work not strike. Striking is emotionally taxing.

  15. SAT down

    The trouble with you guys is that you are stuck in the old ways.

    This kind of behaviour is what caused the problem in the first place.

    • @Donna

      You still do not get it.

      Anyway you have an opinion to be respected.

      Caswell’s small union and weak position would never have been allowed to triumph whether D or B were in office.

    • The point has been made many times a convention often observed between parties in the IR world is if mediation talks open parties return to work to show good faith. That was the out Caswell needed to agree to in order to save face.

  16. DPD,

    There can be thought beyond the covers of The Prince, can there not?

    Or do you keep The Prince on the nightstand next to your Bible? (Piece did says that the Big B is your go to book.)

    I always keep Animal Farm close by but I still believe we can find ways to make the pigs just a little less piggy.

    Are you saying that things can never improve?

    I do not ever expect perfection but improvement is quite possible, if we refuse to cooperate.

    Politics are as they are because we have bought into the idea that this is how politics must be.

    But must they? Look at how your Democrats do politics! Then look at how Republicans do politics!

    Are they the same?

    According to Rand Paul. 😂😂😂😂 , no, they are not!

    At least I laughed once yesterday!

  17. Oh, I got it since 1983 from Lawrence Nurse.

    Now…. if I were Caswell, I would have returned to work. One could always strike again.

    But….if I were Mia, I would have seen past that. It is her government which should show good faith here since they were the ones ignoring the unions letters.

    Conventions are for both sides or neither.

    So…you are the one who does not get it.

    • No Donna, the government as NO told you must have an eye how decisions taken will impact the whole. This is absent political and other consideration. In this scenario government is the influential actor not Caswell. Of course he is free to follow the path he did once he has the support of his membership but deal with the fallout. If Mias wins who holds the even stronger hand? She will have another mandate and can chose to be naughty or nice.

  18. But David, where did I express the opinion that it would have been different with the Dems?

    Why do we speak of the Duopoly?

    Is it not the ways of the Duopoly that we are trying to change?

    Lately, you seem to locked into the system not rooting for change.

  19. @Northern, WOW! The management guru Peters wrote a book … ‘The Pursuit of Wow’ as memory serves … well bro, you have been hot on that track these last few days! 😇

    After explaining how keeping ‘Kingsley Street’ on the rails all boxed in works like a charm you now take aim with “[she] will not negotiate with terrorists”.

    Propa! That is as masterfully succinct a summary as could be.

    And to your followup @David, you yourself pointed out that Caswel as a (reluctant) politician and as astute political board room player are essentially incompatible and as you also note so explicitly “the other unions see Caswell and UWU as a threat added to which he is their biggest critic”, how then would the bridge be crossed to “establish a strategic relationship with the union with the largest membership reNUPW”.

    Just wondering aloud, bro.

    And @Donna that brings me further into idealism and reality.

    David speaks of ideal IR practices and then alludes to the reality of the egos and historical personal issues that likely corrupts that IR theory … my references to Machiavelli goes directly to that.

    It’s not a bedside tome but almost!

    It is blunt, real and clearly the framework (whether they have read it or not) of every deeply ambitious politician … it’s not that we are old and steeped in any non-changing ethos … No.

    It’s simply that his treatise is a crystal clear expanation of human nature which psychologists defined with the terms that are central to the discipline of human behavior: A-type personality, megalomaniac etc!

    I too am an idealist (remember I wasn’t always old 😇🙏🏿) but years of politicians ambitious ‘end justifies the means’ has tempered that.

    A friend gifted to his young mentees one of Covey’s books ‘The 7 habits of successful Teens’ (think that was it) as a early primer on life lessons. She also gave Haley’s book on Malcolm X.
    I would add the ‘Prince’ and your favorite ‘Animal Farm’ for any teen also (there was a cute cartoon version of that book long available too).

    If they can grasp that when Malcom says ‘By Any Means Necessary’ it matches directly to ‘The End Justifes the Means’ and can see the links to how that also played out in Orwell’s work then … voila! Their eyes are opened wide.

    Idealism is good but reality is better: four legs were great until two legs became better, again!

    It’s NOT that a Machivellian ethos is RIGHT … surely it isn’t… it’s simply what drives every political leader of recent vintage and not much we do will change that … because frankly it drives most of us too!

    • @Dee Word

      You honed on the nut to crack if we (Caswell) wants to achieve Donna’s objective. There is a place for ideologues but we live in a world where pragmatism often wins out.

  20. @ Donna
    Expressing your views will make a difference. You have my support. The definition of politics has a sell by date that has expired. Sit tight and watch as it evolves.

  21. I have spoken of the political animal type here on BU. I have also just recently spoken of some of these “qualities” being shared by many ordinary Barbadians..

    I am firmly grounded in reality. But reality is not static. Things and people do change over time. I am saying we should not merely narrate what is but we must introduce a new way of thinking. Gently, not with the same big stick mentality. Cussing politicians will only get their hackles up!

    I believe that there is a part of almost every Barbadian politician that would prefer to be known as the leader of a successful government, beloved of the people.

    I don’t think they have a clue how to do it.

    Big stick mentality is all they know. Big stick mentality is all most of us know.

    But gradual change is possible. And change starts with a new vision of what could be, not a total capitulation to current reality.

    If this isn’t possible than pray tell me how expressing our opinions can make any difference!

  22. @ Donna at 12 :30 PM
    “change starts with a new vision of what could be,not a total capitulation to current reality.”. Insightful words. That is how leaders make a difference. It is not about power over; It is about power to make things better. The political musical chairs game is tiresome.

  23. https://barbadostoday.bb/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/IMG_7555-730×456.jpg
    QEH management says nurses at hospital not involved in strike action

    Article by Anesta Henry
    Published on
    December 29, 2021

    Management of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH) is denying that the health care facility has been hit by the strike action being taken by nurses represented by the Unity Workers Union (UWU).

    While the union’s general secretary Caswell Franklyn told Barbados TODAY that on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day some wards were short-staffed because nurses did not report for duty, executive director of the QEH, Juliette Bynoe-Sutherland said the absences on those days were the norm.

    Franklyn has said that QEH nurses were joining the intensified industrial action, as the Government and nurses remain in a standoff over a range of issues.

    “Some wards didn’t have nurses reporting for duty and they had to find nurses from other wards and deploy them and bring in old nurses that are retired to fill the void. They had to take nurses and deploy them from other wards, but they are trying to pretend that this is not happening,” he told Barbados TODAY.

    “The nurses have given me the instruction to say they are not stopping. They are saying that ‘they have withheld our money, but we are accustomed to not getting money for three and four months’. So, you are not giving the nurses any money that they are legally entitled to. They are not going to falter. A lot of nurses have joined the union since last Thursday,” Franklyn insisted.

    However, stressing that the UWU was not a bargaining unit at the QEH and hospital management was not aware of any nurses being on strike, Bynoe-Sutherland said it was customary for the hospital to record a higher absenteeism rate at this time of the year.

    “We normally have high rates of absenteeism during the Christmas holiday season and Crop Over, and our rates of absenteeism are within the expected norm, and we move staff between wards to make up the differences to fill any gaps,” she explained.

    Bynoe-Sutherland added that hospital management appreciated the usual coverage provided by staff when their colleagues “are out on leave” as it places an extra burden on those remaining.

    “And our Queen Elizabeth Hospital nurses are known for doing their best to ensure that our babies, intensive care, medical and critical patients receive needed care during this turbulent time, and I want to thank them for holding strain,” Bynoe-Sutherland said.

    “Our bargaining units are the NUPW [National Union of Public Workers] and the Barbados Nurses Association, and both have made significant and substantive representation on the issues impacting nursing,” she added.

    For almost a month, UWU-represented nurses in the public sector have stayed away from work to force Government to fix longstanding issues affecting them, including poor working conditions, salary increases and sporadic payment of salaries.

    Franklyn said the nurses are also upset that a meeting planned for December 24, between Minister of Health and Wellness Lieutenant Colonel Jeffrey Bostic and himself, never materialized after Bostic called minutes before the scheduled 9:30 a.m. start to make several demands, including that the healthcare providers return to work while talks were ongoing.

    “The nurses are standing firm; we’ve got to,” the UWU General Secretary said.

    Efforts to contact Minister Bostic proved futile. anestahenry@barbadostoday.bb

  24. Thinking aloud: “How does “big stick mentality differ from “slave driving mentality” in post Colombian Barbados up-to 1938?

    • @Vincent

      Ask the capitalists.

      Ask members of your profession charged with advising on on marshaling of resources.

      The blogmaster has expanded your remit.

  25. I hope wunna listening to Brasstacks. There is a nurse telling a story which if true, is disgusting.

    I too vex and cowardly to say what I think.

    • @Hants

      You heard the attacks starting to come at Caswell re: UWU is a one man union?

      Let us hope it does not get nasty and the plight of the nurses is forgotten.

  26. @ David BU at 1 :10 PM
    Thanks for the expanded remit. I was under the misapprehension that they do read BU.. I am not privy to their advice.I can only comment on what is actually implemented. Are they the Capitalists?. Or are they responding to events in an environment dominated by Corporate and State Capitalism?

    • @Vincent

      The blogmaster will be guided by you. It seems at first review the capitalist system feeds your profession with the theories, concepts and measures which populate your discipline. Let us agree to give the heterodox segment of your world a bly 🙂

  27. @Donna
    I appreciate your approach.
    Yet, it is more platitudinal, than substantial. While this maybe the preferred ‘social solution’, it may not rest well with those looking for more tangible results. I have no idea the overall priority of the unions/members objectives.
    It is somewhat interesting, past IR history aside, that a PM accused of controlling, would be requested to control?
    I note you didn’t touch my comment on “voting”.

  28. @DIW
    for the record, as you may know, De Bungalow liked to run on the wrong lead. And had a tendency to go wide, navigating the Garrison bends when accelerating. Any rider taking a rail seat with him, could have catspraddled the entire field…lol

  29. “I hope wunna listening to Brasstacks. There is a nurse telling a story which if true, is disgusting.”

    believe them, you will note when it comes to people of Afrikan descent some of the apologists could care less what happens to them…

    anything coming from government and their pimps can safely be attributed TO LYING..

  30. @David December 29, 2021 6:39 AM

    The point has been made many times a convention often observed between parties in the IR world is if mediation talks open parties return to work to show good faith. That was the out Caswell needed to agree to in order to save face.

    Going back to work would have only been the out for the PM. The nurses decided they were not going back until their grievances are addressed.

    If the nurses return to work without any resolution timeline commitments, it will be a return to the exact same suffering situation they have been getting for years.

    The modus operandi being used on the nurses for years for all their issues is to give them lip service by repeatedly running this playbook over and over.
    1) Management acknowledge the problem and say they are working on it as fast as they can and to give them time.
    2) The nurses give them another month before asking a question.
    3) Management makes some excuse to get the nurses to go away they they go back to step 1 and repeat

    • @CA

      We know from Caswell the nurses under his charge agreed to strike, however, Caswell is the head of the union isn’t he? He has to guide the ship.

  31. The government cannot be allowed to get away with this neglect and arrogance for another 40 years….that’s the bottomline…now they are going to approach the nurses themselves their families and friends BEGGING FOR VOTES to return to the parliament with their BULLYING wannabe slave master, wannabe dictator act of swollen headed stupidity and selloutism….

  32. @Hants December 29, 2021 1:18 PM

    I hope wunna listening to Brasstacks. There is a nurse telling a story which if true, is disgusting.

    I too vex and cowardly to say what I think.

    I was listening and that story is completely true and she is not even telling everything cause things are much worse than that. I don’t know her but I have a nurse friend in that exact or worse situation.

    They were not one of the ones striking but still got no pay in December, November, October, etc. I think the last time they say any money was back in July or August, it was so long ago I can’t remember. When they finally get all the pay they are owed, they will probably get somewhere between 10 and 20 thousand dollars if not more.

    As I said before on this blog, the only wrong move Caswell has made thus far was not doing a proper press release detailing the true gravity of the situation of the nurses. Using generalities like sporadic pay is not enough, he needed to be more detailed and state the number of cases of non-payment of salary and for how many months they are owed.

    I could tell you happenings that would make your blood turn to steam.

    • @CA

      Does it have to do with the QEH transforming to an SOE from under the umbrella of central government? A case of case flow issues at the QEH or inefficiencies in HR?

      What is it.

  33. @David December 29, 2021 2:57 PM

    From what I gather based on news articles, he would have meet with the nurses on the pay issues and they opted to continue the strike.

    Nurses are no stranger to suffering so if they have to strike and suffer without pay for a month or two, they will do it because they have been working for months without pay so staying home and striking without pay is easier that trying to get to work without the same pay.

  34. @David December 29, 2021 3:09 PM
    It is not a QEH problem. It is an all public heath care facilities problem.

    The main problem is at the BNA. That association has no teeth and accepts whatever promises they are given. I bet doctors get paid on time and have most of their grievances addressed in a timely manner otherwise BAMP would be calling a strike.

    The second problem is the nurses refuse to band together to form a united front to get everything dealt with because they don’t want to disadvantage patients and are scared of victimization.

    All their major issues except for staff shortages can be dealt with in less than a week if governments (both B and D) were serious. Nursing shortages is a worldwide problem so that one will take time but all others can be fixed within a week if there is a will.

    The government prefer to clap for nurses and mint limited edition blue dollars and all manner of political gimmicks instead of addressing the nurses’ concerns.

    If the PM was not paid for 1 month, somebody would be going home, appointed or not. Time somebody head to roll for our nurses.

  35. David this is off topic somewhat… what is this I am reading of a Chinese medical facility for Chinese citizens only to be built on the compound of the former Princess Margaret school???

    What the badword!

    Several bloggers have spoken of the new colonization of Bdos from that part of the world and this type story asserts that undeniably.

    I find no true Bajan upside in such an arrangement sans the upfront construction dollars for land purchase and a few menial jobs… is this fah real??

    Why no discussion in media???

    Am I missing something …. this is NOT copacetic atall !

  36. I want to some foolish questions

    How many nurses working in Barbados?
    How many nurses on strike again?
    So the union with the least among of members was able to manoeuvre all of them into strategic position and then crash the vaccination drive?
    So no other nurses could be redeployed to the vaccination centres?

  37. If the issue is truly based in lack of payment of wages, then the nurses have an urgent grievance, that needs to be addressed.

    On a tangential point, this would inform on the state of government finances and the macroeconomic state and possibly even, give an inkling as to one reason for the impending election.

    There is no doubt that the macroeconomic state is perilous.

    Such is not a fault of the current administration, but an inherited mess, coupled with a brutal global crisis.

    PM Mottley has done the right thing by seeking a global solution, for lesser developed countries.

    There is really no option, but such an approach.

    Debt levels of lesser developed countries, at a time of supply line crisis and excessive inflationary pressures, are simply unsustainable.

  38. All the underhanded sleight of hand things will happen while yall are all excited and pumped for a shite election that they can lose….it’s afterward ya will hear what anti-black crimes they got in store for overexcited idiots WHO WILL NEVER LEARN…….am staying well away from it…

  39. That rumor of the medical facility has been around for a couple days, guess ya just gotta wait and see…however it goes, true or not, it’s too late anyway, yall got punked, since now totally distracted…

  40. Northern,

    I have not heard of any third party candidate in my constituency. GP2 says he will conjure up thirty but I cannot take anybody seriously who has GP2 as their leader.

    Between a rock and a hard place. Between the devil and the deep blue sea.

    Don’t know if I can drag myself for the five minute walk to the polls!

    But back to my approach – I said they should immediately commit to resolving a couple of the issues – appointments and regular paydays are easily fixed.

    Then they should set a firm schedule to tackle the other agreed upon issues one by one.

    That is not platitudinal. That is action. Most of the demands are reasonable but they all cannot be fixed at once.

    I learned from a former civil servant that the delays in payment are often caused by lackadaisical civil servants who are late in passing on the necessary authorisations for temporary staff and the requests for the necessary supplemental funds when additional workers are brought on after budgets have been allocated. The system also seems to be somewhat cumbersome.

    Administrative issues.

    Oh, and adequate PPE is also fixable. A few ministers’ salaries should do it. Hopefully she will lose some in the election.

  41. I know teachers and pupils ay yhst school. They have not been reassigned and the new school term is around the corner.

    Too many students to be easily absorbed elsewhere. I will believe it when it is announced.









  43. William…i don’t get these, after spending 9 years on the blog complaining about this personal injury case, years before i registered as an activist, i figured the best thing to do was to share that i got the judgement and eventual payout and was done posting certain things to the blog, unless it’s human rights related and they STILL DID NOT GET WHAT I WAS SAYING……now if i had told a lie, they would be all over it…….instead of ALL OVER THE LIES THE GOVERNMENT IS TELLING THEM…

    unless there is a direct threat to me and my family and others close to me, i will not put any info i have out there about certain people, that chapter is closed, just as i promise…

    they are now on their own…sink or swim, they made their beds, want to believe lying politicians, go right ahead….

  44. Anything Anti_Chinese must be originating from White Warmongers
    Innocuous Youtube Videos about Tai Chi now have warnings
    CGTN is funded in whole or in part by the Chinese government

    Chinese Martial Arts: Qingcheng Tai Chi

    Tai Chi Wu Style Short Form – Sensei Makio Nishida

  45. Actually, Northern, who is always quick on the uptake, he got it…..especially when they rolled out the J-Bonds series…lol

  46. Showing results for when did black people get the right to vote in barbados
    Search instead for when did black people get the right to vote in barbabdos
    General elections were held in Barbados on 13 December 1951, the first held under universal suffrage. The result was a victory for the Barbados Labour Party, which won 15 of the 24 seats. Voter turnout was 64.6%.

  47. When people do not get paid they should stop working this is a no brainer

    work is a mugs game and people need to be freed of their shackles and chains

  48. DONNA, “dont know if I can drag myself for the short walk to the polls”.

    Stupse. I am hearing this crap from too many of you otherwise intelligent people.

    And when yuh left with idiots running the country and xhite flowing on the streets again, then what?

    Remember the DLP built an eight bed isolation facility for a potential pandemic?

    Eight beds…morons had no clue.

    If they were still there, nuff bajans woulda dead and top joker would still be sitting on his hands.


  49. @Crusoe December 30, 2021 1:48 AM

    Many of the so called intelligent people not voters like me are extremely displeased with the PM’s latest blunder of calling an early election as the latest in a long line of blunders our sweet talking dictator-like PM has made this year.

    Under normal circumstances, a snap election would have been a brilliant move. But this is her worst move yet with Omicron, the rapidly spreading variant that has blown through all COVID protocols including the prettycols of mask wearing and hand washing, she chooses to play a political game with people when she has no idea how the variant will behave in Barbados.

    This election was only called now to avoid the embarrassment of the mistreatment of our treasured nurses and to remove the non-lawyer Caswell, the only thorn in her side who keeps reminding her, an extremely experienced lawyer and parliamentarian, every time she flaunted a pesky thing call the Laws and Constitution of Barbados.

    All political parties in Barbados need to be sent a message. COVID has opened our eyes to the depths the political elite will go to maintain contrrol and kill the dissenting discourse a healthy democracy needs to have and right now our democracy is very sick and staying away from the polls is the only way we have left to send that message.

  50. I too am thinking that boycotting the polls is the only way I can show my displeasure.

    I cannot get past this offer of Jobby Bonds to settle debt to ordinary citizens. I cannot get past how quickly the nurses have gone “from heroes to zeros” in Ms. Mottley’s eyes for asking for regular pay days and adequate PPE.

    I don’t give a damn about some stupid protocol. I care about justice and fairness.

    You cannot be wrong and strong.

    Mia has squandered a wonderful opportunity to say to workers,

    “WE HEAR YOU! We understand that you have been patient. We will work through your lists starting from today. I know that you will understand that we cannot fix everything at once but your most egregious grievances will not be allowed to torment you any further under my watch.

    And I wish to say to all other workers with legitimate grievances that we commit to addressing them and only ask your patience as we do so.

    Together we can work it out! Forward into the New Republic!

    This was an opportune time to show respect for citizens as equal partners in this endeavour!

    But hell no! Bring out the big stick and sing a song of protocols!

    When “temporary” workers are told they should beg their families for bus fare to get to work, when families struggle to find that busfare, you speak to me about PROTOCOLS??????


  51. @Donna
    I cannot fault many of your comments. Unaware of the true priorities, your approach is simply one of respect, which is rarely, if ever, a bad strategy.

    I was pushing your ‘vote’ button, largely because of the idea of a no show = displeasure. Sadly, the pols only care who gets the most votes…1589 – 1437, 825-776, all the same to them. They need one more.

    It is a vexing choice.

  52. @CA
    Canada pulled a similar mid pandemic election call, a few months back, after a shorter stint in power, albeit a minority parliament seeking majority.

    While many voiced being upset at the call, it faded, and the results didn’t indicate much punishment.

    The flip side to your comments, is she cannot wait until Omicron is in full gear, or that will possibly blow 3 months. The numbers are staggering, though the virulence is much better.

  53. @Critical… life experience is a blessing and a bane …

    The blessing tells me that your thrust of activism by ‘removal of patronage’ (a la civil rights bus boycots) can be very effective.

    But the bane of the same life experiences clearly shows that to do that in an election is absolutely ineffective … madness really.

    No lotta long time on this. I believe you and @Donna and others are intellectually wise to have garnered your life experiences in similar context.

    All I would say is that 1) your sentiments play directly into MAM’s hand and 2) I do hope those others who have said to me that they WILL NOW vote – after considering sitting out before this headsnapper – are significantly more than your crew!

    As much as I think Phillips is an absolute mad-hatter I would give his model of community activist parliamentarians under his Solutions framework serious consideration …ie for every really solid candidate he has she/he would be supported 100% to victory.

    That would DEFINITELY put an arrow across Mia’s bonnet… but of course such a program requires a depth of effort the likes of which Solutions would be unable to muster in two weeks … so support ‘fresh’ DLP candidates and give them some seasoning for the next rodeo.

    But to paraphrase the Borg: Non Participation is futily non productive!

  54. Donna,

    I agree with your position on both debt settlement and nurses conditions.

    But the better alternative to a non vote, I agree with NO, is to vote for Grenville.

    Not the DLP who squandered tgeir eight years. But new blood.

    To Grenville, get a full slate of 30 candidates.

    You have a rare opportunity to become the Opposition.

    You need to run in St.James or Christ Church, if anywhere, those will provide you the most votes.

    Best of Luck

    Vote Solutions, Vote Grenville!

  55. @DIW
    That was my strategy last time. But the man is a mad Hatter, and have no idea who will be mustered on ballots this time around. Eastmond is far more capable, but…..

    • @Crusoe

      Latest report is Grenville has confirmed 10 candidates. He has put out a public call for candidates with an election 19 days away. Do you understand why the blogmaster sides with a pragmatic approach?

  56. NO,

    Yes indeed! A MOST VEXING choice.

    So vexing that I have taken to listening all day for the last three days to the sounds of Prince’s guitar gently weeping George Harrison’s masterpiece.

    I appreciate your input and will take it under advisement.


    There is much I like about Grenville’s hands, on grass roots, practical approach to governing but there is also too much that scares me about him. He is indeed a nutter. And a religious nutter, the worst kind! Way too often, I read his articles and cringe. I could not take seriously any person who accepted him as leader. Really unfortunate because I don’t think he would engage in corruption. I believe he is well-intentioned.

    The thud you just heard is Grenville Phillips II hitting the floor. Donna has never been a hater. What is there about Grenville to hate? Plenty to disagree with, plenty to annoy, but nothing to hate whatsoever!

    Anyway, I will take your advice into consideration also.


    Same goes for you.

  57. GPII gets an A+ for effort. Being agnostic, his persistent Biblical references shuts me off. His biggest pluses, he is honest. And will try. He is ‘of us’ but not ‘one of us’. And I suspect is an issue in attracting candidates. He needs a solid finance candidate. Unlike the other current leader, spreading oneself across all portfolios is neither easy, nor preferred. Three solid deputies would enhance the overall appeal

    • How can Grenville not be running and his the spokesman for the party? His approach has been rejected toi many times for it to make sense repeating.

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