BEWU, BEL negotiations stalled again

By Alexis R. Milan
Staff Reporter

Negotiations between the Belize Energy Workers Union (BEWU) and the Belize Electricity Limited (BEL) management over a Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA), including a raise of pay for employees, have stalled again and indications are that the union may soon give a directive to go ahead with industrial action.

According to BEWU Vice President Marvin Mora, the union has not seen any movement from the company, and negotiations have not been forthcoming in terms of a break-through. Mora said the union is of the opinion that the company’s management is basically presenting to them the same proposal they have already rejected, simply packaged differently.

He added that the union is almost at the point of abandoning mediation completely.
The union feels that the mediation has done little to change the company’s position and as soon as the membership gives the directive to undertake industrial action, the union will mobilize.
Last week the union decided to continue mediation and put strike talks behind them, after Labor Minister Godwin Hulse urged them to return to the negotiating table. Since then, the union feels that no progress has been made.

The union is asking for an eight percent salary increase among other demands which have brought the negotiations to a standstill. BEL has its own ideas of what the employees should be receiving.

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