Mr. Patrick Yarde
Guyana Public Service Union
On behalf of the Executive Council and members of the Guyana Public Service Union, I wish to extend fraternal greetings to the Executives and members of the Public Services Association of Trinidad and Tobago on the occasion of your 70th Anniversary celebration.
Those of us who are representatives of public employees are fully aware of the prevailing circumstances in which they are required to function. We are aware of the numerous and complex challenges which confront these workers and their representatives as they seek to promote both the public interest and that of our members. This state of affairs requires that we be extremely vigilant and militant in striving to protect our members from arbitrary and unjust treatment at the hands of their employers.
We are required to possess a high degree of recognition, adaptability, dialogue and partnership with the employer in addressing such challenges and problems. We are aware that over time the economic environment has grown in complexity and result in serious threats to the existence of enlightened conditions of employment. Hard won freedoms for workers and their families are often under threat in the public service and public servants are often victims of the failure of employers to treat them justly and equitably. Government as employer very often exhibits behavior which threaten the well being of our members. We must therefore maintain unity while we enhance our capacity to meet these challenges.
Traditional methods and approaches have to give way to creative ones in which dialogue and partnership between employer and employee must of necessity be prominent feature.
Public service unions cannot afford to be steeped in the approaches of the past as the needs of workers are now different from previously. Unions such as ours operating in the public sector are required to evaluate their performance with a view to formulating and implementing strategies focusing on the need to both protect and ensure that at all times the interest of workers are treated with respect and remain dominant. The need is for approaches geared to attracting the confidence of workers. The emphasis should be on creating a shared vision between the Government and its employees which would contribute to a situation of harmony among stakeholders and serve to promote the public interest, and those of workers in general.
It is our understanding that over the seventy years of its existence your union – the Public Services Association of Trinidad and Tobago – has placed great emphasis on upholding and promoting these values.
I am therefore exceedingly pleased on behalf of the Executive Council and membership of the Guyana Public Service Union to congratulate your union and its leaders past and present for their sound and outstanding contribution to the protection of the interest of the public and that of its members over a period of seven decades.