GUYANA: Teachers Union (GTU) Calls For Strike Action After Teachers Locked Out – Video

GTU CALLS FOR STRIKE ACTION, AFTER TEACHERS ALLEGEDLY LOCKED OUT ON MONDAY

HGPTV (Channel16 Cable67)          Re Covid-19 Vaccination Mandatory Requirement 

After teachers were allegedly locked out of schools on Monday due to their vaccination status, the Guyana Teacher’s Union, in making good on its promise, called on all teachers regardless of their vaccination status to abstain from work.

————-      SEE PROTEST PHOTOS AND REPORT BELOW

GTU spearheads protest against vaccination mandate

Despite MoE’s no work, no pay policy…        

GTU representatives and teachers in protest mode outside the Ministry of Education’s Brickdam office on September 8, 2021

 

 

 Members of the Guyana Teacher’s Union (GTU) and teachers yesterday commenced a three-day strike action in front of the Ministry of Education’s Brickdam office to retaliate the recent vaccination mandate that was put in place by the government.

Members of the GTU on Tuesday during a virtual meeting announced plans for the three-day strike action in hopes of having the vaccination policy for teachers rescinded.

Last Saturday the government updated the COVID-19 emergency measures in the Official Gazette stating that any person who wishes to enter a public building, which they have lawful access to, must be vaccinated. The Education Ministry before opening schools had issued a notice that teachers must be vaccinated before they return to schools or submit a negative PCR test once per week if they wish not to be vaccinated.

Following the COVID-19 restrictions, the GTU had indicated that it was against the vaccination mandate for teachers and had even expressed disapproval on the arrangement made for the reopening of schools as it relates to teachers being marked absent if they cannot produce the PCR test results.

After the Union’s call for strike, the Education Ministry in a statement on Tuesday evening condemned the action by the GTU calling it “unconscionable and uncaring.”

“We condemn this action as irresponsible and not reflective of the realities of the present state of the COVID-19 pandemic nor the needs of the nation’s children,” the Ministry stated.

The Ministry further noted that vaccination for teachers is not mandatory, but stressed that for those who do not want to be vaccinated, there are other guidelines put in place, that is, to submit a PCR test.

Following the notice too which states that if teachers do not show up for work they would be marked absent, the Ministry in its statement reminded teachers that “all teachers who do not work, do not get paid.”

Taking note of the decision made by the GTU, Government in a statement noted that ‘any employee within the Public Sector who is absent from his/her place of employment as a result of the said Order (COVID-19 guidelines) will not be entitled to a salary for such day(s).”

Despite, the ‘no work, no pay policy,’ the members of the GTU protest gathered in front the Ministry of Education in protest yesterday. Some held placards while others chant “boots on the ground, we ain’t backing down.” Some even called for the Minister of Education to come out her office.

The Union’s General Secretary, Coretta McDonald, yesterday told media operatives that the restrictions need to be lifted. She added too that the protest is not only concerning the vaccine but other financial issues not honoured to the Union by the Ministry.

“If the Minster and her colleagues are ready to lift the restrictions in the Gazetted order, and they are ready to honour our obligations and the financial obligations, we would say to our members, return to school in full strength for both face-to-face and online classes,” she asserted. Until they are ready to talk, she said, “we will continue to ask teachers to withhold their services.”
Sep 09, 2021 –Kaieteur News

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