New labour code still not ready for Parliament

ST JOHN’S, Antigua – After nearly a year, Minister of Labour Dr Errol Cort has indicated that no schedule has being set for the new labour code to go before lawmakers.

According to Dr Cort, this is primarily because employers and their union representatives are unable to agree on who should determine whether workers should turn out on public holidays, among other issues.

Dr Cort said that this issue has generated quite a lot of discontentment on both sides.

“That is something we need to work at and find some kind of amicable formula that would be satisfactory to all the parties involved,” he said.

Tensions deepened between unions and employers earlier this year with unions declaring that a proposed labour code amendment would strip nonessential workers of the right to stay home on public holidays.

The amendment proposal is that workers would be compelled to report for work as long as they receive adequate notice that they are scheduled to work.

The current law requires employers to ask if their employees would be available before scheduling them for holiday work.

(More in today’s Daily OBSERVER)