N Touch
Tuesday 16 July 2019
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Letters to the Editor

Trade unions must adapt

THE EDITOR: Do trade unions in TT have both feet in the grave and are just ashamed to lie down? Can we restore the power of trade unions in this country?

TT workers need a comeback and we need it soon.

Firstly, workers need to learn how to strike effectively. There is no shortcut. Trade unions must organise the entire workplace so that workers can move as one.

Collective bargaining is dead and buried so unions are going to have to experiment with lots of new approaches. The law says employers must negotiate with unions but do not have to agree to any union proposals. Let us bury the dead and move on. Comrades let us revive the strike.

Unions must adopt new ways of providing value to workers. Codetermination where workers have seats on corporate boards is imperative. If unions really want to rebuild worker power, innovation must be the new religion.

Employees no longer trust unions and do not feel their intent is for the employee's best. Petrotrin and Caroni come to mind. Unions seem to be more interested in keeping the employer happy rather than the employee. Unions need to change their attitudes and work for the employees who are their employers.

The badjohn union days are over. Comrades there is much work to be done so that we will overcome some day. Unity is strength.

AV RAMPERSAD, PRINCES TOWN.

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