A series of consultations will precede the implementation of a Minimum Wage in Saint Lucia.
So said the Minister for Labour Dr. Virginia Albert-Poyotte, who recently presided over a meeting of the Minimum Wage Commission this month.
The minister says she is pleased with the level of dedication demonstrated by the stakeholders towards fulfilling its mandate in a timely manner.
“And at this stage they have what you call a preliminary report but that report has to be examined by Cabinet and the prime minister. Subsequent to that we will have to engage stakeholders and other persons especially the trade unions, workers in different sectors and the employers so they understand the implication of a minimum wage.” Albert-Poyotte said.
She explained that the Commission will preside over the consultative process which will involve both employers and workers. Minister Albert- Poyotte noted that the Government of Saint Lucia wants to ensure that peaceful labour relations prevail, as this delicate initiative is being piloted to successful fruition.
“The presence of a minimum wage is to ensure that there is the protection of workers as well as satisfying the interest of the employer to create industrial peace in the country. So we want to minimize conflicts and we want to ensure that employees get what we refer to as a decent wage, for the work that they would have done in order to support themselves, their families and to stimulate economic growth. We want people to be happy in the workplace,” the minister said.
Minister Poyotte also reminded employers that they too are part of the contract of happiness in the workplace; as they accordingly deserve commensurate returns from their employees, in exchange for fair day’s pay.