Stalemate between Union representing ATC & Air Port CEO
On January 15th 2022 by reason of an emergency meeting held between Air Traffic Controllers and their Union (WICSU), left the vital Air Traffic Service unmanned and resulting in the closure of that department for several hours. Airport management are blaming the Controllers for the negative impact on flights, passengers and services in general, that were hampered as a result of the action. The Union representing the Controllers appeared on People’s Voice Sunday to set the record straight.
The Union made it clear it was never the intention of the Union and the Air Traffic controllers to disrupt the business of Air Safety and entry into the county but since there were no willingness on the part of Management to have serious dialogue with the union over long standing Issues that is now taking a toll on the workers, they were forced to have an emergency meeting to decide the way forward. The Airport Management and their lawyers straightway interpreted the set back to be and industrial action taken by the union and the workers and forced an impromptu court hearing in order to disallowed such actions from happening again.
WICSU President Sharon Cannegieter while stating her position as Union, says everything was done to bring the Airport Management represented by Mr Mingo, to the table but their request and communications were not only disregarded, but he has not responded in good faith; only to be served court papers, which hearing was held this past Friday January 26th 2022. The judge will rule next Friday whether the union has the right to have emergency meetings or not. If allowed, the possibility of further disruption is likely, but rather be avoided.
The Airport CEO Mr Mingo in his meeting with the workers promised to pay the workers 1% on their salaries at the end of January 2022; hoping to avert any further disruption while promising not to pay the Traffic Controllers for the day when the disruption took place. The shop steward Mr Shevlin Francis maintained such behavior by Mr Mingo does not suggest he acknowledges the value placed on the responsibilities and importance of the Air Traffic Controllers when it comes to safety. While both parties await the judge’s ruling, the Union is by no means finished or ready to settle for what is rightly due to the employees, and expect Mr Mingo to willingly continue negotiating a settlement favorable to both parties.