Top leaders settle Barbados port issues
The prime minister of Barbados and several other leading officials in the government completed marathon negotiations with port management and labor officials Thursday, eventually hammering out an agreement that ends any prospects for a port strike.
The port has seen a series of brief work stoppages over the last three weeks, but a complete shutdown has been avoided.
According the a report in The Nation, a Bridgetown newspaper, the Barbados Worker's Union reached an agreement that calls for a settlement with a union member that had been dismissed by the port for alleged security violations while working as a guard. The former worker will no longer work at the port, but will instead receive a financial package approved by all parties.
The union had been backing the veteran guard, claiming he was improperly dismissed by port management.
The prospect of a port strike prompted Prime Minister Owen Arthur to become directly involved in the talks. He was joined by top officials from the Labour Ministry. The government officials met for more than 12 hours with the union and port management officials to hammer out an agreement, the report said.