General Secretary of the Antigua & Barbuda Teachers Union (ABUT) Ashworth Azille said, while he can not tell parents what to do, the union is calling on its members to “withhold their labour” today.
“It is pretty much up to the parents if they choose to bring their children out to the government schools, but we are calling on all of our members to show solidarity with each other,” he said.
After six days into December, some teachers and other public service workers are yet to receive their November salaries.
“We have received word that one or two banks have commenced payments, but there is still a large number of teachers who remain unpaid,” Azille said.
“Our position is, if all have not been paid, we can’t consider teachers paid.”
The general secretary said the situation is one of social justice and neither government nor the treasury department alerted the teachers to expect the late payments.
“If salaries are going to be late, they should properly engage those who would be most affected,” he said.
“We have been calling all week to ascertain when salaries were going to be paid and our calls have gone unanswered in many cases. We just thought that persons are evading us.”
President of the Public Service Association Janelle Wehner said officials have informed her that the late payments were as a result of cash flow constraints.
She said that government would be releasing funds incrementally to different banks.
(More in today’s Daily OBSERVER)