WATCH: NHT workers walk off the job

KINGSTON, Jamaica — Workers at the National Housing Trust have walked off the job. The workers are now protesting outside the NHT's head office in New Kingston

The workers are now protesting a long-standing delay of the implementation of a job evaluation which was finalised in 2021.

The workers are the third group of civil servants to walk off the job in four days.

“If they’re going to build a school, they take it from the NHT, so we need we draw. The workers need their draw. We want we partner draw,” one protester said.

Speaking with OBSERVER ONLINE, president of the National Housing Trust Staff Association, Shanna White, shared that the issues began in 2016 when they requested a job evaluation.

“Having gotten approval from the Ministry of Finance, in 2018 we actually started the process. In 2021, last year November, the consultants finalised the report and it was issued to the leadership of the organisation,” White said.

However, since then, White said there has been no implementation and communication has been little to none.

“We’re saying that we have been waiting for far too long for the implementation and we’re here because of that. We’re also coming out of a negotiation that has seen and bourne no fruits for us and we’re also expecting the company that feeds into the nation of which we feed into, to actually honour some of the demands that we are requesting,” she told OBSERVER ONLINE.

She noted that a five-day notice for a meeting regarding the implementation was issued on Thursday by the third Vice President of the University and Allied Workers Union, Garfield Harvey on the staff members’ behalf.

White said during a meeting with management, Harvey communicated how restive employees are and the frustration being faced.

“It is very frustrating. We have our families. We are affected by the growing prices, and as you said, we have never, ever come to this so this was a hard decision but it was necessary and so we are here today out of frustration,” she added.

On Tuesday, over 2,000 National Water Commission workers took industrial action over an outstanding reclassification exercise as well as the ongoing public sector compensation review.

READ: WATCH: ‘No money, no water’ - NWC workers demand raise of pay

On Thursday, the island’s air traffic controllers went on strike over concerns about a reclassification exercise.

READ: Air traffic controllers walk off the job

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