Teachers protest 5% wage offer
Teachers protesting outside the Manchester High School. (Photos: Gregory Bennett)

MANCHESTER, Jamaica — Teachers at the Manchester High School demonstrated at the entrance to the school for about an hour Friday morning in protest against the Government's wage offer of a five per cent increase.

The Jamaica Teachers Association (JTA), which represents the majority of Jamaican teachers, insisted that the Government's offer is much too low.

The teachers noted that nothing less than a 10 per cent increase would be accepted.

OBSERVER ONLINE also understands that teachers from several schools across the Corporate Area protested the five per cent increase.

Contacted by telephone, Education Minister Ronald Thwaites acknowledged that the protest would have adverse effects on students at these institutions. 

Quizzed on a possible increase in salary, the minister said his ministry had nothing to do with the wage offer and suggested that contact be made with Finance Minister Dr Peter Philips.

Last month, JTA President Doran Dixon had threatened that industrial action would be taken against the Portia Simpson Miller led-administration if wage talks between the two were not better managed.

The president told OBSERVER ONLINE then, that the JTA “is totally distraught about the Government's handling of negotiations”.

The five-year wage freeze that the teachers, as well as other public sector workers, entered into with the Government ended on March 31.

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