Media Advisory: National bipartite workshops for CARIFORUM member States

A series of national bipartite workshops to be conducted in the CARIFORUM member States of Barbados, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Guyana, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago.

News | 17 September 2015
PORT OF SPAIN (ILO News) - A series of national bipartite workshops organized by the ILO in conjunction with the Caribbean Employers’ Confederation (CEC) and the Caribbean Congress of Labour (CCL), will conclude over the coming weeks in the CARIFORUM member States of Barbados; Saint Vincent and the Grenadines; Guyana; Suriname; and Trinidad and Tobago.

A three-year Project1 funded by the European Union (EU) and executed by the ILO, seeks to build capacity of Caribbean regional workers’ and employers’ organizations so that they can make substantive contributions to policy-setting aimed at regional development and the integration process, and thus fulfil their obligations under the Social Aspects Chapter of the Economic Partnership Agreement. The workshops will provide a forum for employers’ and workers’ organizations to understand their role in the project, to air their concerns on national social and economic issues, and set a common agenda for collaboration between the social partners at the national level.

The previous nine national bipartite meetings were held in July and August this year in the member States of Saint Lucia; Grenada; Dominica; Antigua and Barbuda; Saint Kitts and Nevis; Haiti; Jamaica; Belize; and Bahamas. Speaking after the Bahamas Workshop, Jennifer Isaacs-Dotson, General Secretary of The National Congress of Trade Unions of the Bahamas (NCTUB) stated, “I commend the EU for its financial support and the ILO for its coordination of this Project. This Workshop explained the EU-funded Project in support of the CCL and the CEC in detail. It explained the role both organizations must play in ensuring that this project is successful. All who attended the bipartite workshop understand that we all share the same issues and only through constructive social dialogue, at the bipartite level and at the National Tripartite Council level, will we be able to come closer together to solve our problems.”

The timetable for upcoming workshops is as follows:
21 September 2015 - Barbados - National Union of Public Workers, Bridgetown
23 September 2015 - Saint Vincent and the Grenadines - Methodist Church Hall, Kingstown
28 September 2015 - Suriname - (Hotel Krasnapolsky)
30 September 2015 - Guyana - (Pegasus Hotel)
2 October 2015 - Trinidad and Tobago - (Kapok Hotel, Port of Spain)

To request further information and to request interviews please contact:

ILO Decent Work Team and Office for the Caribbean
Dawn Lafond, Communication and Information Management Officer | | +1 (868) 623 7178/ 7704 ext 412 or
Averlon Toussaint | | +1 (868) 623 7178/ 7704 ext 411

1The Project funded by the European Union is entitled: “Challenges to CARIFORUM Labour, Private Sector and Employers to fulfil their Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) Obligations: Caribbean Employers’ Confederation and the Caribbean Congress of Labour Component of the Support to Facilitate Participation of CARIFORUM Civil Society in Regional Development and Integration Process.”