Demerara Timbers workers strike for wage increase

Under the umbrella of the Guyana Agricultural and General Workers Union (GAWU), seventy workers from Demerara Timbers Limited (DTL) went on strike on November 19 at the company’s Mabura Hill operations.

According to a GAWU press release, the strike resulted from a failure of the company to arrive at a consensus with the union since June 22, 2015 over several issues: a wage/salary increase of twelve percent; meal allowances and station allowances to be increased by twelve percent; night premium for security personnel; suitable guard huts for watchmen and issuance of certain personal protective gears.

Since then, the union said it was able to meet with the company on three occasions, the last of which was on November 17, following which DTL said due to its revenue position, it cannot facilitate the wage increase demand of 12% but offered instead a Christmas bonus of $5,000 to each worker in lieu of a wage increase for 2015.

Following the deadlock, on November 18, GAWU requested the conciliatory services of the Ministry of Social Protection and a meeting is expected to ensue between the union and DTL today at the Ministry’s boardroom, Brickdam, Georgetown to commence at 13:30h.

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