‘Ignore threats, let’s strike’ – GTU urges teachers


The Guyana Techers’ Union (GTU) has dispatched letters to schools across the country urging teachers to ignore threats from high offices and proceed with a strike action for better salaries.

The GTU took a decision to proceed with the industrial action due to failed talks with the Ministry of Education (MOE) on improving the remuneration package for teachers.

In the correspondence, the Union urged the teachers to not report to work from the commencement of preterm activities on August 27, 2018.

The Union also informed the teachers to “not listen to threats which will come from high offices. You have a right to strike as an employee.”

Headteachers are advised to take school keys to the respective Education Departments from Friday August 21, 2018.

The Union’s President, Mark Lyte says the strike will be the biggest ever since the month-long industrial action by teachers in 1995.

He expects that the strike will have a series of protest actions in the city and that it will run into the new school term which begins in September.

On Thursday last, the Union met with the Minister of Education Nicolette Henry and other government officials, where they made a proposal which was unfavourable to the GTU’s demands.

In its letter to teachers, the GTU said it views to counterproposal by the Ministry “as an insult to the integrity of all teachers in Guyana. We believe that enough patience was exhibited by the Union to allow MOE to arrive at a satisfactory proposal.”

The GTU is hoping that through the strike action, the Ministry realizes the importance of teachers to the country and therefore appropriately compensate them for their efforts in moulding the future generation.

The GTU reminded that to strike is an employee’s right. “A refusal to work, organized by a body of employees as a form of protest, typically in an attempt to gain a concession or concessions from the employer. It is a collective, organized, cessation or slowdown of work by employees to force an acceptance of their demands by employer,” the Union noted.

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