Teachers plan sickout

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A sickout is reportedly being planned by the country's public school teachers.

Sources have informed The Gleaner/Power 106 news centre that the Jamaica Teachers Association (JTA), which represents public school teachers, will be stepping up action to protest against the government's wage offer to teachers.

On Friday, at a joint press conference with International Monetary Fund representatives, Finance Minister Audley Shaw insisted that the government could not make a better wage offer to public sector unions which did not accept.

But this after he had previously indicated that the government would be going ahead with plans to pay, this month, the wage increase it has agreed with some public sector unions to all workers, including those who have rejected the deal.

However, the JTA has taken issue with the payment of the five per cent increase, which will cover the first year of the four-year deal.

It said, last week, that the move is unprecedented in light of the fact that the current salary negotiation has not been concluded nor a Heads of Agreement signed.

The JTA had warned that if the payment is made this month it would view the action of the finance ministry as being tantamount to union busting and a breach of Collective Bargaining Rights.