The executive of the Police Welfare Association (PWA) has hailed a meeting with the opposition United Workers Party (UWP) as “very fruitful.”
PWA and the government negotiating team are presently at loggerheads over salary and other fringe benefits for the triennium 2018 to 2021. The PWA is asking for 15% for 2018/2019, 15% for 2019/2020 and 15% for 2020/2021. The government has offered zero, zero, zero for the years in question.
In an exclusive interview chairman of the PWA, Cpl Jefferson Drigo revealed that the UWP negotiating team made the following proposals to his team.
“We were offered 2.5% for 2018-2019, 2.5% for 2019/2020 and 5% for 2020/2021 they have also decided to pay the insurance premium for all retired police officers for life since that is presently not being done,” Drigo stated.
According to him, a case was also made for the “special duty allowance” which is paid to SSU, Task Force etc of $450.00 to be paid to “all police officers” however he indicated that the UWP said that will be looked at.
“We also made a case for the “risk allowance” which is paid to just a few sections in the police force to also be paid across the board and also overtime allowance which is another burning issue for us to be looked at,” he said. Drigo stated that at present overtime allowance is not being paid to police officer in Dominica, BVI, St. Vincent & the Grenadines and Grenada and this “is unjust.”
“We are also police officer and our lives is also at risk, we have to at any hour of the night go out to investigate crimes and also traffic accidents and we are not entitled to risk allowance, that is unfair and unjust, we need that to be paid across the board to all police officers,” Drigo said.
The UWP negotiating he revealed did not give a commitment to that but promised to take a “firm look at it with a view to addressing the situation.
“I can say that the meeting was very cordial and fruitful,” he said.