DOMINICA’S PM SKERRIT EMPATHIZES WITH SUFFERING LIAT WORKERS
One CARICOM head is calling for discussions on the future of LIAT, which continues to struggle even after the Government stepped in to save it from collapse and liquidation.
Dominica’s Prime Minister, Roosevelt Skerrit, made the call during a radio programme on Sunday, March 21, the Dominica News Online reports. He believes the matter requires urgent attention and that a regional approach is the solution.
The former workers continue to demand the payment of their severance (which runs over $79 million) and other gratuities, while
even those who have been re-employed with the company say they are struggling financially.
“I still believe that these are human beings. They have families; they have mortgages like all of us…,” Skerrit says. Accordingly, he says that regional heads of government must seriously look at addressing the issue of severance.
But while agrees that a lot of money is owed to the workers, he also admits that regional governments have no money at this time due to the current pandemic.
Since the resumption of the airline’s operations, Skerrit says Dominica has been paying the salaries of the employees who are resident there.
The prime minister says he understands the plight of the employees and the anxiety they face, and he says the Dominica government is prepared to assist, going above and beyond what has already been done.
At some point, Skerrit says, he hopes the matter can be discussed at the CARICOM or OECS level.
The court-appointed Administrator of LIAT, Cleveland Sea-forth, has also called on regional heads to consider paying some degree of severance in order to avoid legal action.