TSTT has been advised that the Communication Workers Union (CWU) plans to ‘picket’ its employee Calypso competition today. Such a disruption would be unfortunate, as this is an employee event open to the public, in fact using the medium of Calypso to voice divergent views. The company finds it baffling that any group purporting to represent employees would seek to disrupt such an open event and undermine the hard work of the very employees it represents. ‘Picketing’ would suggest industrial action is being taken at TSTT which under the law is not permissible.

“TSTT’s Management is just as aggrieved as the CWU that there has been no agreement in spite of our best efforts and using the best industrial relations experts in the country,” said Messiah. However, he assured that the company would not let that stand in the way of its obligation to the welfare of its employees. “This event is important in giving employees opportunity to improve service to our internal and external customers – to deepen bonds among their fellow workers, to put faces to names they may just see on a memo, as well as to provide an outlet for artistic expression.” Mr. Messiah added, “TSTT is happy that so many employees have set aside differences over collective bargaining issues to come and support the calypso event.”

“The Union will be on the outside this evening because the CWU does not believe that any change is required in the way we do business; the company simply disagrees,” stated Mr. Messiah. He noted that the CWU seems to believe that the negotiations are to be an uncompromising, one-way affair. “Negotiations are a give-and-take process. The company has made a number of generous and progressive offers to the CWU. Frankly, I am concerned – is the CWU acting in the best interest of our employees?"

Mr. Messiah added: “Nearly every company this Union represents has long unsettled agreements – Hilton, Illuminat/Neal and Massy, and TSTT, among others. I find this difficult to understand, particularly in light of the number and magnitude of labour agreements settled recently with other companies in Trinidad and Tobago.”