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BITU says jobs could be cut if BNS moves services to Dom Rep

BY BALFORD HENRY
Senior staff reporter
balfordh@jamaicaobserver.com

Monday, October 01, 2018

MANAGEMENT of the Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS) and the Bustamante Industrial Trade Union (BITU) are to meet tomorrow to discuss some new proposals which could affect a number of jobs in its local operations.

The Jamaica Observer understands that about 100 positions within the Jamaican operations could be lost, if the bank goes through with proposals to move three sections to the Dominican Republic, including its Lending Services Unit which processes loan applications; the Processing Services Centre; and the Business Services Centre.

The bank had written the union early in September informing it about the proposed changes. This was followed by a meeting in mid-September at which the proposals were formally introduced.

The Observer understands that the bank explained the need for changes that would affect: best practices; standards such as increased efficiency in the processing and support services, while reducing structural costs; and the need to further expand shared services collection hubs across the Caribbean.

The result would be that the roles, functions and the jobs listed in the proposals would be shifted to the Dominican Republic and 100 jobs are likely to be lost in Jamaica.

BITU President Senator Kavan Gayle confirmed last night that the proposals had been raised with the union at a meeting with the management some two weeks ago.

He said that the latest decision is that they would be fully discussed at the meeting tomorrow.

But, Senator Gayle said that the union feels that the bank has already made the decisions and that there is little or no room for readjustment.

“We believe that any thing that will impact our members must go through a process of consultation and an agreement that the consultations be carried out properly, and to be proper it must happen at the formulation stage. We are of the view that they are coming to us after already making those decisions, which is unfair to the workers,” Gayle insisted.

He said that BNS must provide the details tomorrow', and they must include satisfactory reasons for the changes, to allow for intelligent consultations and responses and adequate time to discuss all the issues.

He said that having made gross profit of $$11.2 billion last year, he felt that the bank should appreciate the efforts of the Jamaican workers in reaching that target, instead of transferring their jobs to other countries and seeking to their positions redundant.

The Observer was unable to contact the management of the BNS yesterday for a response, but has been following a number of issues involving the BNS and the BITU for several weeks.